We all face adversity. Every single one of us has a cross to bear. In our quest to keep up with out neighbors, in our quest to look at what everyone else is doing, we only look at the shiny things that they have- we fail to look at the stuff they don’t have, or the things that they have that might not be so good.

What we fail to recognize, what we fail to glean from our neighbors, is how they triumph over adversity. Have you ever looked at someone you know has had a hard go, and marvel at how they got through it?

How do people get through the bad stuff?

How do you get through the bad stuff?

What is your secret to getting over adversity in your life?

In a bizarre, yet not so bizarre coincidence, the morning I wrote this post I began catching up on blogs, and saw this blog by KE Garland https://kwoted.wordpress.com/2022/06/06/monday-notes-4-weeks-in-the-netherlands/ Kathy and I has some weird cosmic connection going on, as we often mirror each others thoughts and feelings. But she tells a tale of overcoming adversity and how she recently handled it.

64 thoughts on “Adversity

  1. Hummm….when I think about the hardest adversities I’ve encountered, processing out loud with people I felt were genuinely interested in listening and helping me work through whatever, is definitely @ the top of the list… I tend to process life out loud anyway. I think unprocessed trauma has a way of popping up elsewhere in our lives.

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  2. When I think of the times in my life that I really struggled, there were three major things in my life that kept me going. My Faith, my Family and my Friends!! ( and French Fries :)) Wouldn’t make it without them! ❤

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  3. We all have our own share of adversity. It differs for each individual. What is stressful for you may seem trivial to me. And vice versa. We can’t judge others or compare ourselves with others because it’s never going to be equal. I look around and to me some people have a charmed life in comparison to the load I’ve been dealt. But the reality is everyone has stress challenges in their lives. It’s how we deal with adversity that is important . Some problems can be solved, some can’t. You learn to cope the best way you can. For me I’ve learned to focus on what I can change or fix and then go about fixing it. The things I can’t change I find a way to accept and see how I can turn the negatives into a positive. If I’m still breathing then it’s a good day. And I believe in moving forward. Sometimes it’s after a good cry, some deep breaths until I figure out my next strategy to keep moving forward.

    I have been fortunate in many, many ways. I have amazing children and grandchildren, I’ve had a wonderful career. But, I’ve also had more roadblocks on my life’s journey than most. Take an ordinary day in my life. For instance, today I’m sitting drinking my morning cup of half caff reading this blog after telling seri to remind me to call a window expert to check the leak discovered from the storm over the weekend . I’m also dealing with boxes piled high from a condo leak that appeared in my wall a few months back. So I currently have two separate rooms that are slowly being repaired. At first I thought… What? Like a pandemic and ovarian cancer isn’t enough? Now I have to deal with vomiting from chemo while my house is under repair? Oy! Well, Apparently so. Ya gotta laugh because it’s crazy!

    Yes, AND while dealing with ALL that, I’ve also been told I need to go on another new chemo drug . So, yeah, I know what adversity is. I have an incurable disease.

    BUT, I can either be miserable or enjoy my life while I’m still here. So….I’ve learned that people can readjust their lives no matter what is thrown their way. We have the choice to be miserable or happy. That doesn’t mean we can’t get frustrated or sad. But we CAN handle it. I think … how did people handle living in a concentration camp? I had relatives die in Auschwitz. NOW THAT IS REAL ADVERSITY! I have a roof over my head and Netflix. Big difference!

    For me, the way I deal is to just talk to myself and realistically face what I can do and what I can’t. I can’t change that my condo needs repair. So I have to take the steps to repair it. And I have had to endure sleeping on the couch because my bedroom is underwater. It’s frustrating but it won’t kill me.

    I look at life like that now. Nothing that can be fixed is worth fretting over for too long. It’s just not worth getting that upset over. I am fighting a disease that will eventually kill me. But I’ve learned to live day by day. I’m not dying today so I’m going to enjoy the moments I can. When you are told you have an incurable disease you assess things differently. I like living. So I’ve learned to be a fighter. And I have a sense of humor and laugh often. I cry when I need to and laugh more than I cry. And I focus on the positives.
    I think it was John Lennon who said “ Whatever gets you through the night, it’s alright, it’s all right! “

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      1. LA I think you make the most of things too. You’ve got a lot going on. These next few years will often be taxing as you help your aging parents. I’ve been There and that’s not easy. In fact it’s really, really hard. Especially when they get sick, or become helpless. But that’s part of life. We raise our children and then when they grow up we take over and care for our parents. Life certainly isn’t easy for anyone. We are all surviving adversity the best way we can.

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  4. I suppose I rely on my typical approach to most everything in life: examine the issue, review options, overthink for awhile, settle on an answer and move ahead. That certainly doesn’t mean that my whole life is viewed as one big pile of adversity. It’s not, but if the model works for the easy stuff why not use it for the really hard stuff as well.

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    1. Good point. I’m usually pretty good at figuring out how to handle things, but both sets of parents have been giving us grief, and frankly, I don’t know what to do. It’s just stressful when I can’t figure out what the right path is

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      1. That would be hard. I’m sure there’s a lot to consider. I wonder if in a situation with parents it becomes more trial and error, versus making a decision for oneself? Depended on the focus, perhaps this is where getting input from others/experts needs to be considered…

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      2. It’s more watching all the parents do stupid things, and really not knowing how to handle things before they blow up too large. Like, trying to let parents maintain dignity as they age, but nicely telling them they’re screwing up

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      3. From what I see of you…I don’t think you’ll ever be a contender for what both my husband and my parents are putting us through

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  5. My morning routine keeps me grounded and balanced. I write morning pages, walk and listen to the Daily Readings on an app called Laudate and pray. If I don’t do all of that, I feel out of sorts. When I’m facing adversity, I pray.

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  6. I’m pretty good at dealing with “stuff”. Lost my bank card, no other account or card – yup, I can work it out. Cancer – yup, research it, attend the treatment, plan how to care for myself in between while continuing to work. Left with debt by my ex – swear, cry, then make a plan to clear it. I don’t tend to panic, and am good at working out practical solutions. I find the key thing is to let the emotion out – sometimes that’s best done in private, other times it needs to be expressed to the individual who caused it. If I don’t let the emotion out, I’ve learned it will fester, which harms me more than them. I guess having been brought up surrounded by civil unrest & war, I’ve learned how to deal with serious adversity better than things such as unkindness, avoidance of responsibility, entitlement, manipulation…. all of which can make me pretty upset and/or angry.

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  7. It feels like the last few years of my life has been full of adversity. What keeps me going the most is my faith and family. I rely on my faith and I think of my family during those times and what will also help them through it. But depending on the situation, I have “smaller” tools for helping–like a good glass of wine, painting, journaling, even just immersing myself in mindless television. Sometimes we have to face adversity head on and other times, we need distractions.

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    1. For me…it’s light books. I escape into a sweet simple for for a few hours. You’ll see the impact of that when I do my month in books

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  8. From my time in the military, I learned that I can handle anything for a amount of time. Moving from Alaska to Washington? That is only 3 weeks of discomfort- I can handle anything for 21 days. Looking for a new job? I can handle the uncertainty for couple of months. Nothing is forever- so I learned I can handle it…

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  9. So, you’ve implied something that I’ve been focused on lately, and that’s sharing the so-called bad parts of our lives, too. It’s so easy, especially with social media, to curate our lives and make them look all “shiny,” as you’ve said. I think it’s timeout for that behavior. We don’t have to share all the bad, but I do wish people would sprinkle more in, so we know we’re all human beings.

    Anywho,, thanks for sharing my site, and here’s to more cosmic blogging 😉

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    1. Honestly, I don’t think my online presence has ever been full of shine for the sake of making people think there are no blemishes. I tend to be an open book.

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    2. There’s too much sheen of perfection going on, and it sets up unreasonable expectations of what life is. We need to stop doing that and acknowledge our difficulties

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  10. When i go through adversity….i take some time out for myself to pray, motivate myself, reflect and re-strategise especially in my most comfortable areas i.e wherever nature is and my family home. When we face adversity, i believe it is the time to push harder with better strategy.

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  11. I really don’t know LA, I just do. I spent decades not on meds to calm my head yet found ways around it, only twice in my life when things got too hard I sought out the med route. But my wife often says how proud she is that I know how to survive. I guess it’s instinct. Although I do at times get it out of my system to my wife, my brother, my friend and my therapist.

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  12. Thanks for the link to Kathy! Adversity is a complicated topic. I seem to handle the everyday stuff well enough but have an on-going family issue that keeps me awake at night. I do a lot of self talk about letting things go that I cannot change or influence, and to make a positive thought on something when a negative thought hits, and it works – better some days than others.

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  13. I love this, Kathy, and your photos too. Keeping perspective really is about what we tell ourselves. I’m sorry about your debit card, but I’m glad you were able to use gratitude and self-care to help turn around a mood.
    Now…about the lack of a clothes dryer… That was hands down the biggest pain for me during my 70-day around-the-world trip, and it is a top concern in my move to Portugal in a few months. I’ve spent waaaayyyy too much time thinking about this. I think ice-cold shots of vodka are in order 🙋🏾‍♀️

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  14. Oh, boy. I went through about five years of diversity: divorce, loss of a job, upside-down in my mortgage, and not one but two failed relationships. Honestly, I’m not sure why I didn’t think stepping in front of a bus would have been the best solution. I guess it’s simply that I’m an optimistic person by nature and have an overwhelming zest for life, even in the darkest of times. I always believed things would get better, and lo and behold, they did.

    I’m not sure I did anything to make that happen, though. Other than NOT stepping on front of that bus, of course…

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  15. Try to go around it if/when you can. Usually you can’t, in which case there’s no choice but to power on through it with the thought this too shall end. That’s how I got through the string of adversities I’ve faced over the last few years. It was hard, because so much of it was out of my control. I didn’t really relax until I knew for sure WHEN it would end!

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