At the young age of 18 months old I was deathly sick and hospitalized; the diagnosis was Encephalitis. The doctors told my parents that they needed to go home and prepare a funeral because they did not believe that I would ever leave the hospital. My parents refused to give up on me I was told that one Dr. in particular told my daddy that he needed to fight for me and that my daddy needed to speak a Dr. from another hospital about my case and that if anyone could help me it would be this Dr. My parents were also told that if I did make it out alive that I would not be like “Normal Children” (whatever that meant) due to the severity of the disease and the high fever that attacked my body.
Welllllll, hmmmm let me see. I believe I was more than a normal child, I was pretty extraordinary 🙂 I was a cheerleader, ran track and played baseball growing up. I also did gymnastics and loved power tumbling with my fellow High School Cheerleaders at Wayne High School in Wayne, WV. I graduated from high school with a B average, not too shabby for a child who was not going to be “Normal”. Mistake number 1 was underestimating the Power of God and number 2 underestimating my will to fight and live!
At the age of 22 (my son was 4 and my daughter was 6 months) I was diagnosed with cancer and put on Over 140 pounds between my pregnancy and the cancer diagnosis. I had 2 reoccurances but never once gave up, again I was fighting and was not willing to lay down and let this beat me. At the age of 30 I was diagnosed with another form of cancer, once again FIGHT MODE was kicked in to high gear! Nothing was going to keep me from raising my 2 children and living a happy life.
At the age of 42 while vacationing in Panama City Beach, Fl I was swept away out in to the big beautiful ocean by a rip tide. I ended up roughly 150-200 yards off shore and the only thing that saved me was the power of the All Mighty, I didn’t panic and I clung on tight to a boogie board that was on my wrist. You see I NEVER go in to the water with out one no matter if I am using it or not. To me it was a safety mechanism for the unkown and that day the unkown happened! I was out in that water for 30 minutes until an amazing man who was on shore risked his life to save mine. He swam out and helped me back to shore. He and I both held on to that board and kicked like mad to get back to safety. To this day we keep in touch and I will Never forget what he did for me.
It was out there on that board, weighing 277 lbs and praying that I realized 100% that God had a definite plan in my life. I wasn’t sure what but I knew it was in His hands and I had to listen. On that day I made a promise to God that I was going to do whatever it was that He needed me to do when He felt the time was right to reveal it. This was Sept. 15, 2009.
January 25, 2010 is when my new journey in life began and shortly there after in an exercise class is when it was revealed to me what I needed to do. My role in life is to Inspire others to know that their life if worth living! It is to let others know that no matter what life throws at you, you have the power to lay down and let it take you over or you can take the reins and say, “NO! This is my life and I will be happy and I will fight and I will put myself first for a change”.
I am now happy to report that I am 93 lbs lighter with some more work to be done. I have opened my own Fitness Studio and its name is INSPIRED FITNESS, I am a Certified Boot Camp Instructor and Group Fitness Instructor as well as a Personal Trainer. I would love for my next cert to be in Health and Nutrition. I am far from perfect and I am human but my life is full of living and I am fullfilling my purpose and that is to help INSPIRE – MOTIVATE – EDUCATE others to know that YOU ARE WORTH IT!