“The more you’ve struggled to heal and love yourself, the more inspiring your story will be to others when you come out the other side full of triumph, awareness, and honour. Don’t give up. Your struggle today is the source of your wisdom tomorrow.” ― Vironika Tugaleva
Today I was notified that my friend Vironika Tugaleva had suggested a quote for me to read. Vironika must know me well, because her insinuation that I would appreciate her quote above, was correct. It pretty much sums up the way I feel about life, and it definitely sums up the foundation of Winged-Women™, and of all the books I write. In fact, because we are friends on Goodreads, I’m pretty sure that’s how she knows my genre and my taste for quotes. It’s a great quote, so I decided to share it with you. We can all use the magic of our struggles, our fears, our pains, to propel us into the intended future. We can also use those stories to inspire and empower others. And if we don’t like the story, we are free to re-write it and enhance the highs while seeking meaning from the lows….
As I was thanking her for the quote, I was reminded of the ways in which the universe delivers to us, exactly what we need at any given time. The secret or trick or magic or whatever you want to label it, is to be alert for the ‘stuff’ from the universe. Otherwise, the magic goes unnoticed. And our spirit goes unfed. The lesson for me has been to be aware and to learn to use everything the universe delivers.
All of my struggles, in hindsight, have brought me great blessings. Even the most nefarious events, such as the death of my son, my brother, my father, my mother, have each offered up priceless gifts like a gilded phoenix from the ashes of the mire. Some of these blessed gifts took years to unearth, while others blare and flare like the flames that brought the ashes.
A close friend once lamented that she never had the miracles show up in her life that I have in mine. Nonsense, I assured her. We all have access to the same pool, however, some of us are not paying attention so we miss the nudges, clues, and miracles that show up for us.
Upon closer introspection, my friend did acknowledge that indeed she has been blessed without taking note. Hindsight clearly illustrated many times when the universe had her back, and on occasion had even led her to have mine…and vice versa.
My first solo book, Blessings in the Mire: A True Story of Miracles & Recollections was written following the death of my son. Believe me when I say that writing the book was the fragile sprout that came of unbarred introspection at a root level, of struggling to find the “blessings in the mire” of my life. It is the most painful book I will ever write, as it require me to delve deep into the darkest recesses of my experiences. In the end, I came out of what I refer to as a “morbid brine” of wallowing in the grief of losing a child, and of dissecting every other painful chapter of my life. What I share in Blessings in the Mire is deeply personal, immensely candid, riveting at points, and will have you laughing and crying and questioning the “big questions” that plague our thoughts when trauma raises its ugly head. It was the catalyst for my healing, and it has been reported to have helped others heal too.
After writing Blessings in the Mire: A True Story of Miracles & Recollections, I placed it into a desk drawer. There was so much of me in the pages, that I was honestly embarrassed to allow anyone to read it. It was only several years later that I finally pulled it out, and began to submit the manuscript to would-be publishers. And with every rejection letter, I smiled a bit inside…. That was my shield. If it was not accepted, there was no need to worry about how vulnerable I was….
And then, I receive another rejection letter. But this one was not a form rejection. This one was hand written and hand signed by a big publisher who loved the story, but felt it was not a fit for his company. “Don’t give up,” he scrawled. “Get it published.” My shield dissolved. I stuffed the letter in the drawer with the manuscript, where they remained for another few years….
If you have suffered loss, have questioned those unanswerable questions, and are brave enough to read it, you’ll be changed. Plus, you’ll know me a whole lot better. I’m not putting a value on either one of those statements. I just hope if you do read it, your mind is open, non-judging….
When you purchase Blessings in the Mire: A True Story of Miracles & Recollections thru this special Amazon ‘smile’ link, a portion of the proceeds from each sale are donated to St Jude Children’s Hospital. https://smile.amazon.com/Blessings-Mire-Story-Miracles-Recollections/dp/1534814426/
For an excerpt, read below….
So what gifts come to you as a result of your struggles?
How are you blessed by the life you’ve chosen?
How do you “use everything” from your life?
Do you recognize support from the universe?
Something near miraculous happens when we begin to express gratitude for all the events of our lives. That gratitude magnetizes more for which to be grateful. I know you know this. My question is, do you consciously express appreciation on a daily basis?
During January, I have challenged myself to find at least 3 NEW things each day to express gratitude for. In the past, I have expressed gratitude for at least 6 things each night before falling asleep. Often, these were repeats. In January however, I am stretching the gratitude meter to include only new things. It’s a bit more of a challenge to change it up on a daily basis! There are rewards though. The speed of more for which to be grateful seems to correlate with the increase in sincere appreciations expressed each day. Try it. And come back in a week or two and share your miraculous results.
I’m including a download for you here, from thesecrettv.com. I don’t think they’ll mind, since their website is clearly on this gift.
Click here to download: Gratitude Check
Please do remember to come back here and post your comments about gratitude. I’d love to know how it enhances your life.