What is the biggest obstacle that you have had to overcome in Life, and what specific steps did you take to overcome it?
My life has been filled with many obstacles to overcome. However, I always thought of them as challenges. So as I sort out the biggest obstacle I think of my biggest challenge. In addition, even while I selected my divorce as my biggest challenge, I am not sure if I would call it that. I remember people telling me that divorce was like death. Death, I do not think so because I had five children to raise on my own and with a song by Gloria Gaynor, "I will survive" I started my journey.
As one of fourteen children, I was introduced to hard times all my life. I had two loving parents who kept a roof over our head and food on the table. One of the most important things my family stressed was education. We all completed high school and some of us were afforded the opportunity to attend college.
I attended a business school instead and receive certificate of completion six months later. The training came in handy because jobs were plentiful for data entry operators and I was always able to get a job. In addition, within the same year, I was married and eighteen years later I was walking out the door. I remember the song "I Will Survive", loaded my five children in my car, and headed for Florida. I explained to the children what was going on, why and how. I had no promised of a job, no place to stay and about two thousand dollars.
Equipped with the knowledge and the experience of hard times and doing without, I was ready to be all that I needed to be for my children. I came across the book "Tough Times Never Last, But Tough People Do" by Robert H. Schuller, after reading this book it help me put things into perspective. I got rid of the notion that I was a failure and became optimistic about everything.
In late August when I arrived in Jacksonville Florida, an old family friend owned a house that needed a lot of work. However, the children and I saw potential, it had a roof, windows, and doors. Each of the children had a pillow and a blanket and the floor was comfortable. We now had a place to call home, and I had high hope that I would find a job before my money ran low. I enrolled all the children into their various schools, two in high school, and two in Junior High and the youngest in day care.
I eventually found a job, all five children completed high school and college with two degrees each. I am thankful for the challenge I had and was determined to stay positive throughout those years. There were many days we had no electricity, no phone, or running water. However, staying positive was always the flavor of the day. It was hard but painting a picture of a brighter day was more beneficial for my children to thrive. The biggest obstacle was getting pass self and focusing on the challenge at hand and that was to provide a safe, stable, productive, and optimistic environment for my children.