January 13, 2024

Navigating Life’s Challenges and Finding Inner Resilience

Have you ever just wanted to put on all black clothes turn off the lights, close the blinds and

just lay on your bed in the middle of the day? Everything you are doing isn’t going as planned

and you are tired, so tired. Life has such a way of hitting you when you are down. Especially

when everyone around you is thriving and flourishing and yet you don’t have the capacity to

celebrate their wins. Which just exaggerates your losses even more. You start to isolate yourself

not wanting to put a light on your discouragement or let anyone know you are struggling. That’s

not your normal persona. You show up positive, upbeat and smiling everywhere you go. You

walk with your head held high and confident like you have it all together. Hoping, just wishing

you could unload this burden on anyone that asks, “how are you?” no I mean “really, how are

you?”. Looking you dead in the eyes so you know they are all in in this moment. You have been

that person for others and you are wondering if it would be too much honesty for anyone to

think you, of all people, could be going through this struggle. So, you smile to yourself and just

keep pulling yourself through the mud that just seems to get thicker and heavier until it just

might swallow you whole without a trace and right now that sounds like a good place to hide.

Yep! That’s been me, more than once. Feeling stripped away of all the comforts I am

accustomed to. Just defeated. Anxiety and depression looming around every corner. I just need

a victory, a small victory. Even with a suggestion of a solution, a positive affirmation or my

smiling grandson, it just doesn’t seem like anything can pull me out. He has a way of making the

most daunting situation seem light and distant for just long enough until he was out of my

direct presence. Fleeting moment of joy.


I have been successful in my 55+ years. I am proud of what I have accomplished and how

I have served people in my past. I have raised 2 daughters who have turned out to be

awesome moms, owned rewarding businesses, surrounded by

amazing people in my life, and have had plenty of money come through my bank account to

live a comfortable and acquired life. I thought I had been through and graduated from the

University of Life when I had come through a very trying time about 5 years ago. My loved one

who was active and healthy, was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Their health declined so

fast. Never in a million years did we think that the decision to pay for disability insurance would

be our future income. I had to put on so many hats in the beginning. I had to manage and close

his 20 year old business down, become his care giver and a full time driver. No longer the

passenger that can look out the window. Eyes on the road. My business as a life coach and

nutritional therapist was no longer my main focus, he was. It was so challenging to watch

people around me dive into their businesses, travel, make money and be happy. So, I thought. I

knew that comparison is the road to self-destruction and that this wasn’t going to end well if I

didn’t make a change. I had lost my joy. I have treasured my joy since I was a little girl. I wake

up with it, I can pass it on to someone in need and I can use it to cast away unwanted and

damaging thoughts. My joy and my ability to love is my soul’s savior. When I have let its light

dim is when the black clothes come on and the lights go out. The Pandemic really wasn’t as big

a deal to us when it came to isolation. We had already put ourselves in isolation from the

outside world and it was a safe place to be. So, I thought it was at the time.

I was so far gone mentally, emotionally and spiritually at the time that I had no idea who I

was. I didn’t sound like me, the image in the mirror looked so much older and my own health

was starting to lose resilience. The ability to bounce back to life. A joyful life. My innate joy.

Something had to be done and quickly. I did not like what I was becoming and to be honest I

don’t think anyone else did either. For the last 9 years, since my mom passed, I have a date

night with my dad weekly. He is amazing and I smile just thinking of our time together. His

honesty and authenticity is what makes me look at life from the top down instead of from the

bottom up. One night, I was crying, which I don’t do often around him, and explaining how

everything is changing around me with my marriage, finances and my life. Quite the pity party I

was having. The first words out of his mouth were, “yep, things are going to change”. Not, “You

poor thing, It must be miserable being you, How awful you have it” and so on. Nope, he said

“What are you going to do about it?” and “to make sure to take care of yourself.” You see, he

had experienced a similar situation with my mom’s decline a few years before she moved on

ward and upward and he knew the deal. In that moment, I felt like I blanket had been taken off

of me and possibilities were forming in my mind. Energy was coming back into my body and I

was finding myself engaged in the moment. It felt so good. We got creative and talked it out

over a few beers and a pizza. There is nothing like someone who cares about you that not only

can empathize with you but bring you back to life with unconditional love. That’s my dad. I

admire and love him more than he will ever know. Bring on the joy and renewed sense of


So, I have used the same strategy in the past 5 years to pull myself out of the muck, sometimes

on the daily if needed. As a part of my Coaching Practice, to start I have my clients discover and

put their Core Values into motion in their lives. Live by them, make decisions with them and

create boundaries with them to ultimately protect their purpose in life. I have personally done

this for years but it will escape me when I get caught up in the whirlwind of anxiety and wanting

to control everything and just cannot get a grip. How can I be authentic with my client who is

going through a rough patch if I can’t do it myself? Imposter syndrome is not a good place to

be. Realizing that I can’t just talk myself off of the ledge by self-talk alone, I know my body is

chemically out of balance. My DNA shows that I can have tendency to be depressed, anxious

and even a bit passive aggressive at times. Who me? Who would have thought this joy filled

person could self-sabotage with procrastination, drinking alcohol, deflecting from goals and

responsibilities but still show up with a smile and a great love for people.

My family has a history of mental challenges. So, I think it is safe to say I do to. The one thing I

have learned over the years with my mental health issues is that nutrition plays an extremely

large role in my attitude and outlook on situations. Without going too far down the biology

path, I know what nutrients and foods make me feel the most alive and the ones that can suck

it right out of me. While self-talk is so important, so is feeding your body from the inside out.

I’ve had blood work panels, DNA, functional testing and Zyto Scans done to help me to

determine what my body needs to be its most resilient. So that when I do take in toxins,

whether they are foods, chemicals or emotionally, I can bounce back faster and radiate joy and

love again to myself and others. My spiritual journey has had its ebb and flows. In the year my

my loved one was diagnosed I had read over 400 devotionals in the You Version Bible app just to

find an answer, to connect to someone else’s story to read about anyone who had survived my

circumstances and still wanted to live. I am not a religious person per se, I don’t go to church or

belong to a bible study, but I do know is there is something much bigger than me and I cannot

do this life alone. Some of the situations I have been in the past 5 years, it was a miracle that

that was the one thing that had gotten me through. I read my devotionals still every day and

journal with gratitude to start my “joy engine” going. Life is so much lighter when you are

appreciating the things around you not depreciating them. They are all valuable and add to

your wealth in their own precious ways. Since the pandemic, I have found that another thing

that brings me joy is my plants. I went a little crazy at first and now I look at the plants on the

“Save me aisle” at the nurseries. It’s one step closer to an accomplishment if I can 1, save

money and 2 bring a plant back to life. How cool is that? Like so many other people, when you

care for something else and it is thriving it brings us joy and happiness with a sense of pride and

accomplishment. That’s some good fuel for our brains and bodies. It’s like a hit of a happy drug.

You are creating your own joy by helping something or someone else to live a brighter and

healthy life. I created the same situation when my loved one was declining. Taking care of him

kept him going. Though not always so happy and fun to be around because he was miserable in

his own skin, I knew that I was making the difference for his life outcome. I focus on what I can

do to bring my joy to others. Which makes me a better person and much easier to live wit. Just

ask my family.

Whatever your situation is and wherever you have been there is always a possibility and an

opportunity to find your joy again and bring it up to the surface. That’s who we are meant to be

and I believe knowing what our body physically, mentally, spiritually and emotionally needs to

be its most resilient is just around the corner. We just have to take a deep breathe, look inside

and take the steps to find it. So, when you feel like putting your black clothes on and turning

out the lights, invite someone over who loves you and will challenge you to think creatively and

to see the possibilities. You are so very worth it!

Joyfully yours,

Angela Morris (Recovering Caregiver)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *