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Rock Bottom...

Friday, October 26, 2012

In managing your life - unknown events can quickly spiral things into a tailspin and hitting "rock bottom" seems to be a reoccurring pattern I am experiencing, long before I seek out help and assistance.

I think this stems from my childhood. You see my mother was an extremely prideful woman. In her mind it was totally unacceptable to EVER ask others for assistance.

In 1996, I went through corporate downsizing. Prior to these events, I felt confident, safe and secure in my 26-year career. But loosing a job, even at this length, puts you through those same feelings like when you experience death - those feelings of shock, denial and eventually acceptance.

Unfortunately down-sizing quickly became the wave of the future, which seems to happen more frequently these days. It's that euphoric sense of being tossed into a dark abyss and not knowing which way to turn next.

By 2004, I experienced my second down-sizing. Positions were no longer careers and jobs became much harder to acquire. Most of my previous work experience included technically oriented positions and I was frequently passed by because I was "over qualified".

I had been out of work since Oct 2004, got very sick in April 2005 and my life hit another uncontrollable tailspin, which unfortunately led me to my current disability.

Financially, I was up that creek without a paddle and sought out my parents for a solution...BIG MISTAKE! They informed me that I was a disgrace, that I had degraded and embarrassed the family name, that this "situation" was totally unacceptable and before they slammed the door in my face - I had become a "burden on society".

With no support from family, I quickly withdrew from life, deep depression set in and those unfriendly triplets quickly rose to the surface. I think you know them....those triplets called: self-doubt, low self-worth, and low self-esteem. They became my constant companions.

I had hit "rock bottom" and it was my significant other that became my 'light at the end of the tunnel' that led me back from the unknown. He took over my house payments and utility bills, to keep a "roof over my head".

Swallowing my pride, I called the county to seek out assistance and was allowed a small food allowance. Government unemployment services was next on my list and I quickly found they have a wealth of experienced people willing to help you get back into the working world.

Then I approached my doctor, he kept reassuring me that my parents were WRONG. The feelings I was experiencing were NOT MY FAULT and soon the internal healing began.

I know now that there are many services available - you just need to swallow your pride, reach out and accept their assistance.

But the story doesn't end here....

Being home-bound is part of my daily challenges and often my patience becomes thread-bare before I seek out help from an outside source. The first week of October, I once again hit "rock bottom" with my physical challenges. My Lymphedema and Osteo-arthritis have over-powered my life. I keep battling to 'stay in control' and not relinquish myself to living out of a wheelchair. Call me stubborn, but I think it's an unacceptable resolution.

On October 9th, I hit the 'end of my rope' and called the clinic, requesting assistance from my doctor! It turned into a 15-day challenge, with her nurse, to obtain the referral which finally resulted in Home Health Care.

The nurse finally faxed in the referral, late afternoon on Oct 23rd, the home care service called me the morning of the 24th and by early afternoon of the 25th - a case manager was questioning and critiquing my abilities and challenges that life has thrown my way. The Case Mgr, in turn, has become my 'light at the end of the tunnel' and frequently calls with other services they have available. I'm astounded, excited and more than willing to get my life back on track.

Then, last night I was thinking about these "rock bottom" moments and wondered if that might be what's stalling out my weight loss journey? Where is the excitement I had when I first started this healthy journey? Where is that determination I once had? And I wondered....why do I think I need to hit "rock bottom" before this healthy journey changes my life?

What I truly need is to find a way to move out of the denial stage, reach out and take advantage of all these wonderful tools that Spark People has to offer. Acceptance requires change and once again - far off in the distance.....I think I see a 'light at the end of the tunnel'........

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • SAL1512
    Life has hurled some challenges my way too. I can certainly relate to your story. I was knocked down and like you, I am working on standing up again. You sure sound like a fighter to me. Just remember that you are stronger now than you were. "Surround yourself with only people who are going to lift you higher. Life is already filled with those who want to bring you down." I do not know who said that quote, but it sure has helped me.
    Sally emoticon
    2207 days ago
  • KITTY775
    Congratulations, you're taking those important first steps. I hope these actions will help you gain strength in your journey toward a better future.
    2220 days ago
    You glow with a positive radiance. I hope this message finds you feeling better.
    2220 days ago
    Boy, I think for many of us, that 'hitting rock bottom' is the thing that turns the tide. Why? Habits? We pick the path of least resistance? I don't know, but I am certainly glad that you are able to get some assistance, and that you are finding help to remove the damage your parents caused you. How are you doing this week?

    Oh, just wanted to say I ABSOLUTELY love your background photo! Great shot!
    2228 days ago
    "Rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I built my life."
    I recently came across this quote, said by J.K.Rowling. Your blog brought it to mind and I wanted to share it with you.
    I'm really sorry for what you've been through. No one deserves the "triplets" you mentioned. And no one deserves such a cruel behavior from their parents. I really admire you for finding the courage to keep fighting. And I really wish that you keep doing it. I'm sure life will reward you for this.
    Prayers for you.
    2234 days ago
    I am so sorry for all you have been through... and so proud of you for keeping fighting and not accepting the wheelchair as an unavoidable solution. You can do it! Please let me know if I can help in any way, you deserve to be encouraged!
    emoticon emoticon
    2234 days ago
    You can do it.
    2234 days ago
    Thank you for sharing your story! My husband went through the same things as you when they were downsizing and he took redundancy, back in 93 . He has since been made redundant twice more. Its heartbreaking trying to find a job as like you he was over-qualified and they choose younger people these days. He has atherosclerosis and diabetes now which makes life that much harder. He is lucky as he had our family support.
    I have my friend who is like you with Lymphedema and she has trouble getting around. But she is not brave like you and won't even try to exercise. I think she has hit rock bottom and could do with reading your blog. Perhaps it would help her. I think I will try and print it if that is OK with you as she cannot use her computer at the moment.
    How cruel your parents were to you. I cannot imagine that I would ever say such a thing to my offspring. We bend over backwards to help them and we are lucky, when we were at rock bottom they helped us in return.
    Never ever give up!
    I hope it will be easier for you now you have some help. Its always a struggle to get it as my friend will vouch.
    Take care emoticon Love and a big Hug from Ellen
    2234 days ago
    Seems when ever your feeling down, God sends an Angel to help you through your tough times. You, and your Angels will help you through it all. I will be praying for you! emoticon
    2237 days ago
    What a beautiful, touching post! My heart goes out to you and I understand how we find ourselves at our present age, burdened with health issues and battered by emotional baggage we've carted around since we were children! Does it help to know that you are not alone? Because, my friend, you are not alone. I'm there, feeling emotions right along with you.

    I'm learning that at long last I AM good enough. It's a daily struggle and I don't always believe it.

    But yes, we have a series of "rock bottoms" as we wend our way through life, no matter how old or how young we are. Keep pushing forward, focus on incorporating as much positivity in your life as possible and Never Ever Get Up, NEGU!

    Blessings! emoticon
    2239 days ago
  • SAMI199
    emoticon great insights & food for thought.

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    2239 days ago
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    What a great blog!!! I am so glad to have met you and to become your spark friend. You have given me so much insight and help anf for that I thank you. You have also helped me in dealing with my husband's lymphedema in many ways!!!
    Blessings and hugs, dear friend,
    2240 days ago
    Great blog! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    2243 days ago
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    2243 days ago
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