Sometimes life throws you a curveball. At other times, your GPS seems completely off course.We all have a story. Every story is different. Mine might go something like this…

“There was a time that she couldn’t see the light. Too fragile and broken to gather her senses enough to think with a clear head. She lived day to day, simply existing to wake up another day and face reality. There was always something in her that couldn’t be explained. She always was a dreamer. Hope is what got her through the day. Just when she would start to dream again, there would always be things to dampen her spirit. Burdens. Struggles. Financially, emotionally, and spiritually. But she continued to pursue that slight glimmer of hope in the distance. Would she ever find peace and serenity again?”

The answer to that question is yes. But the road has been long and steady.

After a divorce, and having been a stay at home mom for 16 years, the transition to being single with 4 kids has been a journey. Finding a rewarding career plus providing for a family can be a continuous juggling act. Most of you that know me well have followed my path. I have done everything from landscaping, to wearing steel toed boots and a hard hat in a factory.I have been in the manufacturing business, insurance industry, web development, and every side business that I could get my hands on. There wasn’t a job opportunity that I turned down. Looking back, I believe these were the stepping stones that I was supposed to follow in order to find the “right” one. Besides, I was out of the work force for a long time raising my children. My skills were unpolished. I have learned things that I never thought I would have to do.

Somewhere along the way, I lost myself. I lost my faith. My careless free spirit began to shrivel, and slowly faded away. I have always preached to my children the importance of following your passion, your dreams, your heart. I did that for a long time. But financially it wasn’t paying off. So I did what every parent would do. Pursue any job opportunity that provided for my family. So began about a four year journey, mindlessly going through the mundane 8-5 grind. I would like to say that I never complained. My family and friends would hear my struggles, but not my employers-never. Every day I would just thank God to be able to provide. However minimal it was, it was enough! God never let any of us suffer or do without.

I never stopped dreaming about the perfect job scenario. Many times I thought I was perfect for a position, only to be disappointed by the rejection. God does have a plan, even when we are too stubborn or blind to see it. I had settled into my last position and planned on staying there. I had even started my photography again and launched a new website. Two days after my big announcement, my camera gear was stolen. I couldn’t shoot even if I wanted to until everything is replaced.And that’s where I believe I hit rock bottom.

So here I am, in a mundane job, barely getting by. My only artistic outlet to creativity is taken away in a blink of an eye by some thug. I had strayed from the church. Where once I was physically fit, I had no desire to go to the gym and was heavier than I had ever been. Lost. And tired. I had stopped living.

So here is where my story changed course………

Because of the grace of God, I still had a little sliver of hope left. I’ve always had it. It was just a little dusty.I decided to change my prayer life. Instead of asking and asking and asking for favor in many areas- I let it go. I made a conscious effort to ask God what he wanted for me. I asked him to lead me and agreed to follow. No matter what! Days turned into weeks, and weeks turned into months. What I didn’t realize is that God needed me to prove myself to him. I strongly believe that God was testing me to see if I would give up and stray. I believe he put all those hurdles in front of me to create a woman that he knew I could be.

Then the day came. My prayers were answered.

Six months before I started my last job, I applied for a lot of positions. Most of them I forgot about. About a week into my new job, I got a phone call about a position that I had applied for. We agreed to set up an interview. A month passed,no follow up call. I reached out again and we scheduled an interview. The interview could not have gone better! The position was custom made for me. I felt confident and hopeful. But not too hopeful. I had been disappointed wayyyyyy too many times. Two months passed. Nothing. All these months, I had really done some soul searching and prayed and prayed and prayed some more. Remember when I mentioned earlier that I had changed my approach to my prayer life? I decided to let it go and leave it all in God’s hands.I had decided that I would reach out one more time. So I emailed and asked them to notify me one way or the other when they made their decision. An immediate response was given. “We will notify you one way or the other by Friday”. Urghhh!!! One way, OR THE OTHER. My mind went straight to the OTHER.

Two days later I got the call. It was a Thursday morning-not Friday. I could see the number on the caller id. I knew who it was. I was at work and couldn’t take the call. They didn’t leave a message. On my next break I decided to return the call.They answered immediately and asked if I had received their email. I had not checked my email. To which she then proceeded to inform me…………

That the position was mine if I still wanted it!!

I’m pretty sure that she could tell I was doing cartwheels in the parking lot. I went back inside to my little shared space with about 20 other web developers and opened my email. I couldn’t believe my eyes as I read through the details of the proposal.We never discussed the exact salary, benefits, or perks. Holy cow!! God’s grace is abundant. I had prayed for a position that would showcase my abilities and fulfill my soul. This is a new position. Created just for me. Here lies the irony……..

I mentioned earlier that I had stopped living. God has a sense of humor my friends! He placed me in a position of “Lifestyle Coordinator” for a senior living lake and golf community. Seriously right? I think this is God’s way of saying…”It’s time. Start living again”.

So next week I will begin the next chapter of my journey as Lifestyle Coordinator of Tellico Village. Tellico Village is one of the most beautiful places on earth. And it is filled with some of the most amazing, active, and interesting individuals. Every day I will count my blessings. And they are abundant. I am no longer that struggling single mother of four. I am remarried to my best friend. He is my biggest cheerleader. No one knows my frustrations and the obstacles that I have overcome like he does. His inspiration and encouragement knows no limits. I am honored to share this journey with him. I shared this testimony not be to bragadocious. I tell it to anyone that might be struggling with similar situations. There is hope. Never give up. I’m not saying there are no more hurdles in my path. That is life. What I am saying is this…. Let it go! God urges us to place our fear and worries in his hands. The hardest part is letting go. But when we do, the rewards are immeasurable.