You can do hard and holy things. You can overcome. You can move through the pain, grief, and trauma with grit. You can hold your light up high and embrace your brokenness with grace. "Please hear me, girl: The world has enough women who know how to do their hair. It needs women who know how to do hard and holy things." -Ann Voskamp I fall back on this quote on my hard days, on my dark days. I remind myself that I was created for this life I am living no matter how hard it is. I remind myself that I am strong enough to put my heart and story out there with brave vulnerability because that is a very holy thing to do. The world doesn't need more people choosing the easy way or doing the fun things. The world needs you to be honest, truthful, open-hearted, and to follow the path less taken. I died in September 2015...almost 8 years ago.
When my first husband drank coffee with me on a Thursday morning, watched me drive down the driveway with our children, threw a pile of cash on the kitchen counter, and drove off and shot himself on my grandpa's farm? I died that day.
I went from a 35-year old woman who had been married for 9 years.......a married woman with a 4-year old and a 22 month old.....to a widow standing in the destruction of suicide in the blink of one day.
One day can change your entire life.
One person's actions can change your insides forever.
And over the years....God has resurrected me from my own ashes.
I have taken my life, my heart and put it back together. I am not the woman I was on that day. I am a beautiful new me. This is something we aren't told when tragedy strikes our life. Stop trying to be who you were before. That person doesn't exist anymore. You will be reborn from your ashes a brand new human being. Accept that and you will breathe again. Accept that and you will live again.
I wanted to give up. I'm not ashamed of saying that anymore. I wanted to die. So many days that I thought, "Screw this. This is too hard. There is no light at the end of the tunnel for me. I want out." But.......something inside of me made me stay. And I'm so glad that I did. I chose the hard thing.....living, breathing, moving forward. Hard and Holy things. When my first husband died by suicide I had my own wedding florist/design business. He died in 2015....I created that business in 2006. I closed that business in 2018. And so many people ask me, "Nik, why don't you just stop sharing your life....even though your writing is beautiful......just go back to being a wedding florist. It will be easier for you. You'll be surrounded by flowers and love everyday and not have to hear tragic stories and be out there for the world to know." I never did this. I never went back to that business. I never picked up those floral shears again. I would run my fingers across them and it felt wrong. It didn't fit with who I am now. I couldn't choose that lovely choice because it didn't align with my heart and soul anymore. I chose the hard thing. I chose the holy thing. I chose to keep writing, keep guiding people in their brokenness and tragedies and grief and hard lives. I chose to keep hearing their brutal stories. I chose to answer their messages. I chose to keep sharing the words that fall into the top of my head every day. Words that are channeled from a holy place. I chose to share my story of how God resurrected me out of those ashes even though I knew that some wouldn't believe me, some would roll their eyes at me, some would unfollow and unfriend me. You can do hard things. You can get through your trauma. You can find new life after loss, after being left behind, after your world has crumbled. It's hard. It's not going to be easy. It's going to take time, determination, and buckets of grit. And it's going to take patience because you can't be brave every single day. Some days you have to rest, step back, take a nap, cry. And sometimes it gets worse before it ever gets any better. And sometimes there isn't exactly recovery from our trauma but there is healing and there is learning and there is so much letting go.
Setting down the suffering we are holding onto and walking away. Rebuilding a brand new life. Finding our hearts in the mess on the floor and placing them lovingly back into our bodies. Cracking a window and letting the sun shine in. Believing in a higher energy of love that will guide us and love us through it all. Choosing the hard road....doing the hard things can feel lonely. You're out there on the high wire by yourself. But let me tell you.....you are not alone. There's a safety net of love under you. A force of guidance protecting you. I died in 2015....I wanted my own life to end. I wanted to run away and live somewhere that no one knew me and I wanted to hide forever. That would have been easy. It would have been easy to hide and not show my faults and my broken heart. Instead....I chose to be reborn. I chose to struggle and fight through the dirt until I loved life again.
I sold my house in 2019. I moved to a new town and into a cozy and wonderful home. I got married in August 2019 to a wonderful man and I moved forward. I am content in my life. I am joyful and I am yes, happy. All of this wasn't easy or simple but it healed me on levels that are hard to describe. God lead me toward this beautiful new life, this wonderful husband, and the path was filled with hardships and overcoming but I'm so grateful that I didn't turn away and stay stuck inside of that dark pain and story that I don't belong to anymore. It's ok to let go and set down the past. It's only heavy if you carry it.
You can do hard things. I have overcome my fears of putting my life out there for the world to read. It's who I am now. I've been doing it for almost 8 years. It's my work....it's my calling...It's what I am meant to do. I share my story with you not for fame or fortune but to help you heal your own wounds. You can do holy things. Life can be hard. It can be brutal. It can knock you down, drag you around and leave you alone. And you can get up and keep going. You can heal your own heart. You can live again and find joy and happiness and yes, even laughter. I died in 2015 and God slowly....ever so slowly brought me back to life. And for this I am grateful. Gratitude will get you far in life, in your healing too. You can do hard and holy things.
The strength is there inside of you. You can't always be brave but you can always be authentic. You can't always be courageous but you can always follow your soul and always lead from your heart.
You can do hard and holy things.
Love always, Nik
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"Sometimes people will be so in awe of your light that they don't notice the melting wax, the ashes, the sacrifices of being light."
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