I am sitting here, thinking of people I have met who have overcome tremendous hardship and trauma.

One person I used to know had run to the woods to live out of traumatic stress. when she became ill, she had to walk back to town. she stayed, and through a long, hard, often frightening process, reclaimed her life.

Then, there is a friend I had when I was in college. She had a form of Muscular Dystrophy. when I first became acquainted with her, she had already started three successful businesses. she lived in contstant pain; she couldn’t move, except for her left hand. If she wasn’t in her power chair, she couldn’t even do that. She still finished her BA and graduated.

I remember another person I knew who had severe agora phobia. she couldn’t go anywhere, unless one or two trusted people took her. With some very hard work and help, she overcame her fear. the last I knew, she was working full time.

Another friend I had in college had been hit by a car, which left her with paraplegia. She has been through many surgeries and struggles. One thing that stands out about her is her sense of humor. One day, she and I were out and about. She told me, “It’s interesting going around at stomach and butt level. You can tell a lot about people that way. For example, when they’re angry, they either squeeze in their stomach or butt. I would love to wheel up to someone and say, ‘Your butt says you’re really angry!’ But then, I’m afraid I couldn’t get away fast enough.”

I have sat with countless people who have faced the trauma and abuse of their pasts. Their accounts are often gut wrenching and terrifying; yet as they tell them, receive comfort and learn new truth, they find victory and healing. I have certainly walked through this process myself. I am grateful for the health and strength I now have.

I recently heard someone say that there is no such thing as a victory without a battle. I believe that.


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