Today’s Blogtember prompts asks to ‘describe a distinct moment when your life took a turn‘. For me it was not one moment in time but a summer where my my life took a turn. More than one turn to be exact. On a personal journey that would not all together be beautiful. New experiences, heart wrenching pain, and learning just what it meant to rely on oneself. I did not plan for nor could have expected what that summer would have had in store.
“See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction”
It was the beginning of Summer in 2009 and I was living on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. I had recently experienced a tearful goodbye as we sent my kids to the mainland for the summer with my husband’s parents who had been visiting. The decision came up in a discussion when we were trying to figure out the current logistics of our lives. A year had not yet passed since my dad was killed and I was still going through the grieving process with depression and anxiety. Our marriage had hit rock bottom when we lost my dad and since had experienced ups and downs. We were currently at a ‘down’ moment. I had sought counsel from a dear friend I had known since my I was young and was advised to get out of the situation. I had hoped that giving us both space we would finally be able to work through the issues. Sometimes staying in the same situation without change can only have the same result. I wanted change. With my kids spending the summer with grandparents, I took a new job in a start up salon on the other side of the island. To cut down on transportation costs I found a room to rent that was close to the salon. That began the start of our trial separation while we continued marriage counseling.
The First Turn.
I went from living in our small apartment that resembled a cave from lack of natural light to having my own room in a light airy space close to the ocean. I changed roles from being a full time stay at home mum trying to work through the loss of my dad to being a working woman who for the first time since leaving University had free time without kids. In the beginning I came to work every day as a way to keep myself busy. The more I worked, the more I did not have to think about how much I missed my kids, how much I missed my dad, or wonder if my husband was missing me. It was very lonely in the beginning because I felt abandoned in away. I was now without a car and had not been able to get my friends to come over and visit. Being a military wife stationed in Hawaii I also had no family members I could call on for support. I really wanted to hang out with my coworkers after work but my boss told me I should start learning how to rely on myself. To be okay with being alone. It was a lesson I was not wanting to learn, but began that summer. So I slipped into my new role and took one day at a time.
The Healing Turn.
The second but not last turn my life would take that summer was of the healing kind. I had been prescribed Klonopin from my doctor to help me with my depression and anxiety issues that had come up after my dad’s death. My doctor appointments always felt like visits to a local drug peddler as it seemed more about drugs and dosage and less about my feelings and spending time talking. The klonopin took away the pain or anxiety of a situation but it also took away a part of me. I was beyond flat and become like an emotion zombie. The worst was how it would just zap all the energy out of my body and make it so easy to fall asleep. By the time I had been working at the salon my boss sat me down for a heart to heart. He told me he could not tell me to stop taking the klonopin, but that he did not feel I needed to rely on it anymore. He promised to help me by coming up with a fitness programme and diet so that I could be happy naturally. As a former life coach and the one positive male role model in my life at that time I decided to follow his advice. I stopped taking Klonopin and started doing crossfit and yoga with my coworkers. Slowly I started my journey towards finding my happiness. Yes there were bumps along the way and it was not easy. However I was making lots of new friends, picking up new hobbies, and learning again how I could be okay with being independent.
|Training for a marathon with my co workers and boss on the picturesque beach in Lanikai.|
When Life Took a Turn…
…I saw my life through renewed eyes. I would like to say that the rest of the summer got easier from that point, but things took another turn for the worse. Another story for another day. This was the beginning of my summer and a moment in my life where it took a turn towards change. I think it is so important to look at the trials in your past as stepping stones of change to the person you have become today. I never thought I would have to lose my father so soon and it was the first time I have ever had to grieve a loss so great. I look back on it now as an experience in which I can give empathy and support to others who may find themselves in similar situations. The one thing I would never want someone to have to go through alone is a period of loss. I have started a Sunday series entitled The War on Girls where I focus about the issues I feel personally society is failing the female generations. For me I had more judgements or silence directed at me in a period of my life where I could have used so much encouragement. I believe it is so important to not look at someone’s life and judge from the sidelines. To go off of limited information, speculate, and speak illy of someone where in a world of social media such words are a form of bullying. It is definitely easier to assume and to give advice to someone, it is harder still to encourage when you have not walked a few steps in their shoes. This is a sneak peek of things to come on Sunday’s continuation post on The War on Girls. I challenge everyone who reads this to focus on unconditional love for others.
I have another post about Overcoming Klonopin if you are interested in knowing a little more.
Q: How do you look back on the trials in your life?
Do you see them differently in retrospect compared to during the time in question?
*photographs belong to Bonnie Rose of Bonnie Rose Photography © 2013 All Rights Reserved | www.bonnie-rose.co.uk