I feel like the past month has been full of beautifully timed blessings. On Monday, March 27th, my husband sent me a link to an article in the Boston Globe that highlighted the stories of two survivors of the Boston Marathon bombings who have struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder like me. I was elated; not that they had PTSD but that I had found them! They existed and were sharing their story too. I had spent months searching for them. I quickly googled Manya Chylinski, one of the women featured in the article, and there was her website right before my eyes. I watched her video. Tears streamed down my face. She was in the bleachers that day too. I could have been standing next to her. Our stories were the same. I quickly sent her an email and mentioned I would be in Boston in the coming weeks and asked if we could meet. To my surprise she wrote me right back and shared a number of tools for survivors that I had no clue of including the Massachusetts Resiliency Center, a support hub for survivors of the Boston Marathon attacks. I hadn’t realized it when I emailed her the dates that I would be in Massachusetts during the anniversary of the bombing but Manya did and invited me to join her at the breakfast for survivors. I was blown away. How could I miss it?
The next day I contacted the Resiliency Center and spoke with one of the doctors who helps run the facility. She so sweetly encouraged me to visit them when I was in town. Done! I made plans to meet with them the day before the breakfast.
All of this excitement was taking over the beginning of our week. I felt blessed. I was genuinely excited to have made these connections and felt that a huge milestone in my healing journey was just before me.
Two days later a very important email came my way. As the result of my pro-activity reaching out to a number of websites and blogs that I read for inspiration, the one I never dreamed of hearing from was reaching back out to me! Maria Shriver’s editor Lindsay had emailed me in hopes of featuring my story on their website. I was floored! Before I could even read her email in its entirety I picked up my phone and called my husband. He started laughing in disbelief. I could hear the pride in his voice and it touched me in a way that I can't quite describe.
YES, was my answer!! 1000 words - no problem. I got to work straight away which is partly why you all haven’t heard from me in a while – I was busy writing for Maria.
Within one week, in a matter of days, God had blessed me with amazing opportunities to heal and share my story. The two things I have wanted the most from this horrible experience I’ve endured. I feel like these experiences have inspired me to keep writing, to keep working towards healing, to keep championing my efforts to be a positive voice for those with mental illness, and most importantly, to keep trusting God and His plan for me. After all, He has pretty good timing.