Monday, April 28, 2014

Diagnosis Day. Power of Support in our Resilience.

I was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa (a degenerative eye condition) on a December morning at the age of 18.  I was a freshman at Utah State University at the time feeling like my big challenge was which boy to date on a Friday night :).  After leaving the opthalmologist's office,  a 'good friend' (now my husband :), Steve was one of the first people I shared this new information.  We were at a dance that evening and I said ... I've got Retina something - Pigment or something like that.  I couldn't remember what it was called.  I just knew that my clumsiness, inability to see at night and no peripheral vision now made sense! I hadn't grasped yet that my vision would continue to deteriorate.  It would take a while for the diagnosis to set in.  That night I recognized the power of support and friendship in our challenging times.  He sincerely cared.   

I didn't know anything about navigating blindness and some of the challenging and amazing waters to come.  As I reflect on this day 30 + years later, the ability to reach out to others has blessed my life and helped immensely.  
Steve and I kayaking in beautiful Sausalito, October 2013 - soon to celebrate our 30th anniversary.

I selected the name of our business:  Resilient Solutions, Inc. because I love the concept of Resilience and am inspired each day by the stories of others' ability to bounce back from difficult situations.  Indeed: 

The human spirit is stronger than anything that can happen to it.  CC Scott

We each have a story.  I will be sharing my story in this blog and also would love to hear your story.  My resilience grew as I heard from others ... their examples, their strength inspired me.  I recall shortly after my diagnosis, my parents took me to California to meet with a therapist - she had Retinitis Pigmentosa.  She had a thriving practice, and I recognized that just maybe that could be me someday.  I am touched and appreciative of my parents' amazing support and  helping me see the value in reaching out to others. 

The power of support/connecting with others is indeed an attribute in our Resilience. Reflecting on the many, many incredible people who have been on my team.    

Supportive people give us the space to grieve and work through our emotions.  They know how to listen and when to offer just enough encouragement without trying to solve all of our problems with their advice.  Good supporters know how to just be with adversity -- calming us rather than frustrating us.  Brad Waters, LCSW

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Blind Resilience

Blindness is the inability to see the road ahead. Resilience is the ability to bounce back from difficulty. So can the two possibly come together? To me, Blind Resilience is the determination to bounce back from life's challenges even when you can't see a way through them.  It's the courage to tether yourself to someone who can help, then leap forward into the darkness with gusto. Blind resilience has become the key to happiness and success, and I love helping others find their own blind resilience. This blog is about Connecting with our Resiliency. I will share my story, others' stories and a few tools along the way that help in the resiliency journey.