Motivating Stories from Local Women
Every woman has a story to tell, and no two stories are alike. Meet the women who have persevered through challenges and tribulations and come out the other side stronger than ever.
These unique individuals have seen their fair share of adversity but continue to inspire those around them with the lessons they have learned and their love of life. Read on for a motivating story by a woman who experienced them firsthand.
We had just returned from an amazing, fully immersive surfing vacation to the beautiful coast of Nosara, Costa Rica. Time seemed to stand still there. Our hotel was a piece of heaven on earth … howler monkeys, amazing waves, colorful land crabs, delicious food, and new friends all created the perfect experience. Upon return, Billy, my husband, was unable to recover from what we thought were some common intestinal symptoms of traveling. After making an appointment, our GI doctor said, “Well, you’re 47, almost screening age, so let’s schedule a colonoscopy.” To make a very long story short, August 19, 2015 changed our lives forever … a diagnosis of colon cancer was the last thing we expected.
The next three years included such a range of emotions. It started with surgery and then five consecutive rounds of chemotherapy and clinical trials. During this time, we maintained hope, which was essential to move through each day, and most importantly, we chose to let our faith be bigger than our fear. Billy fought like a warrior but lost his battle with cancer on July 27, 2018, which was the darkest day of my life. I had so much more love left to give.
The following months were a time when I was determined to go through grief the best way possible. I started with family, friends, a widow support group, and my church, which hosts an amazing program called GriefShare. Addressing every aspect of grief and recognizing that the grief process cannot be rushed has been such an important part of my ongoing healing.
My intentional self-inventory includes several things. First, there is purpose in my storm. Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance: James 1:2. Second, we never move on without our precious loved ones; we move forward with them each and every day. Lastly, I have learned that the Lord brings beauty from ashes. On December 16, 2019 on a flight to Maui, I met a man. Little did I know that chance encounter would lead to a beautiful love and recent marriage to my husband Robb. Our families are now truly blended and blessed. I have so much to be thankful for, and our capacity to love is amazing.
Wendy Walker, Chattanooga