Looking Forward and Towards the Future

Carol Roach By Carol Roach, 18th Jan 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>Mind & Spirit>Positive Thinking

I already wrote about my assessment of 2014 but I sometimes like to look at the post to see how I was thinking and feeling at that point in time. The following is a look at my life at the end of 2003.

2003 in review

This articles was previously published in my e-zine, Storytime Tapestry
I could reflect upon the year 2003 and frankly look upon it with deep regret. I had such high hopes for this year. At the beginning it seemed that my life was finally about to fit into place. I had a decent paying job, though not the job of my dreams. I had a wonderful love in my life; the man that I know that I will spend the rest of life with, and my son seemed to be coping better with life. He at least was trying to curb his anger and work out his frustrations in a more acceptable manner.

The winter of 2003

Somehow, somewhere it all went wrong. The winter of 2003 was one of the coldest winters on record here in Montreal Canada, I suffered all winter long with aches and pains which I thought was caused by arthritis. I practically crawled to work in pain all winter. Later I felt that I had fibromyalgia for all the symptoms that I was suffering (too numerous to mention) prompted me to believe that it was so. I was too sick to make the attempt to see a doctor.

I suffered in martyrdom all by myself. Well maybe not all by myself because I complained to anyone who would take the time to listen to me.

My son started getting more and more agitated. He was fighting with his girlfriend constantly, to the point that the neighbours would call the police. Needless to say that the tension in the house was elevated to the point that I was stressed out; not knowing where to turn or what to do.

Major changes

Major changes occurred at the company where I worked. As a call center representative I felt that I was working on the best team that the company had to offer. However, when the changes were implemented, I was given a substantial raise but the team that I loved so much was dissolved. The new team I was assigned to turned out to be very stressful. The clientele was different, the product was different, and most of the clients were angry. It became very difficult to make sales.

To add to my discomfort, due to the restructuring of the company, I had to take a decrease in pay. Yet, it was not the decrease in pay that was the issue for I had not lost all of the substantial increase I had originally gotten; it was the stress. For the first time since I had joined the company, I felt that I could not handle the job. I was not alone, no one else in my team felt that they could either.

Ill health

Just as I had changed teams, within a matter of weeks, I came down with bronchitis; a condition I get every winter; only this time it surfaced in the month of June. Since I worked on the telephone all day long, I was forced to take a leave of absence from work. Now, to add to my stress, finances became an issue.

When I got back to work I was still not well and in the interim I found out that I have diabetes. I was put on medication only to find that my body was reacting to the meds. I was so horribly ill that I again had to take another leave of absence.

My boyfriend's health

My boyfriend's health began to deteriorate as well. He was rushed to the hospital after collapsing at the art studio where he paints. His blood pressure had soared well over 200. This event turned out to be only one of many visits to the hospital for him in 2003.

Leave of absence

After going back to work, I found that I could not cope with a 5 day work week. I was still not well. I was taking at least one day each week off sick. It got to the point that I had to make a serious decision about my future. I decided that my health was more important to me at this time then the job, or my finances, and I chose to go onto a three month leave of absence. I will not return to work until February 29, 2004.

Sister had a stroke

As if this was not enough for any human being to handle, my sister Joyce, who has been suffering with bone cancer for the last two years was rushed into the hospital after suffering a stroke. I received the original call about two weeks before Christmas. My mother simply said, "I think this is it". This was what the family had been expecting for quite some time. We lived in anticipation of what would come first, my sister's passing or the bone marrow transplant that she has been waiting for, for over a year now. Now it looked like the cards were dealt and this time, this was really it.

Best of times worst of times

Yes, my finances are a disaster as I try to keep the creditors at bay. Yes, my year could be construed as a total disaster, but I chose not to look at it in that way. As I write this New Years message, the famous words,

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times", from the great novel A Tale of Two Cities, comes to mind. For although 2003 was pretty disastrous, physically, financially, and emotionally, some of the events that happened to me really did merit as the great novelist wrote, it was, "the best of times". Here are the events that have changed the year around for me.

Family closeness

Through thick and thin, Matt, my boyfriend and I tread through life together. We don't know what the New Year will bring but whatever it is, we will go through it together.
My son finally broke up with his girlfriend and has gone through a complete character reversal. He has become a great help to me since I have been sick. We now enjoy an emotional closeness together that we never existed before.

Encouragement to write

Brigitte Martel, my former supervisor, and Jad Saikali, my young friend, from the call center where I work have been a constant source of strength for me both before and during my illness. These two people encouraged me to pursue my writing career. They had more faith in me than I had in myself.

Furthermore, I owe a lot to a writer friend of mine, Ginnylynn, who kept insisting that I submit my stories as a book. Without her support and encouragement, I don't think that I would ever have made that first inquiry to Publish America. But because of her faith in me, I had my first book published sometime in 2004. I not only consider writing my book, Picking Up The Pieces: A Women's Journey to be the major event for me in 2003, but also one of my greatest accomplishments in my life as well.

Storytime Tapestry

I believe that there is truth in the saying that out of bad comes good and that we should always try to find the positives in life. Since I had plenty of time on my hands due to my illness and my leave of absence from work I decided to launch a e-zine of my own. For me Storytime Tapestry is another dream come true.

My dream was to create an online family of writers and readers alike; a community of love, understanding and friendship. From the feedback that I have gotten from my members I believe that I have done just that. Many people tell me how this e-zine is a ministry from God.

For some the e-zine is another avenue to showcase their writings, for others it is a channel for making new friends. But for just about everyone it is a warm and inviting e-zine that enables the reader to relax and enjoy the most heartfelt, inspirational, humorous, sad, and often time risqué stories on the Internet.

These stories are about real people in real life situations dealing with these situations the best way they know how. My writers are encouraged to practice their art without judgment or censorship from the publisher or the Storytime Tapestry community at large.

I have learned so much from all my readers and writers by publishing this e-zine. I have made many friends because of it. I cannot mention everyone here for lack of space but know in your heart that I have not forgotten you.

My mentors

One of the two that I would like to mention is Thelma Hartselle, my moderator. Without her I would not have an e-zine. Through the creation of Storytime Tapestry, Thelma has become another source of strength for me. She has also become a very dear friend as well.

The other person I would like to mention is Bob Johnston of Starfish at ripplemaker.com, who already was a wonderful friend of mine. He has helped to guide me as a new publisher, and in turn has contributed to the Storytime Tapestry's success. Bob never ceases to amaze me in all that he does and yet he still and always will have time for me.

Hebrew classes

Besides putting out my own e-zine, I started taking Hebrew reading classes. I am so proud of my accomplishments in this area. Taking these classes has done a great deal for my self esteem. I feel if I can read Hebrew I can read anything. Maybe I will try learning to read Chinese next!

The Hebrew lessons extended into a torah study class that a few of us created. Again as in everywhere that I go, Matt and I have made some wonderful new friends. Pierre, Frederic, Mary Beth, and Angela thank you for your support and friendship. The presence of God is really felt in your presence.

But of course I have had such wonderful outpouring of love and concern especially for my sister's condition from my online friends as well. The Survivors which is an online community that I belong to for the past several years have been with me through thick and thin. Chris, Ruthie, Wanda, Jan, Barb, Wendy, Melba, Nancy, Mary Ann, Jacque, Dean, Joyce, La Dell, and Dixie thank you ever so much.

Sister's condition in 2004

With my sister in the condition that she is in, I as well as my family need all the love and prayers that we can get.

Since my sister's hospital stay I have had about 2000 people praying for her recovery as well as my family's emotional well being. The World of Hope prayer warriors have been a major contributor for prayers and healing.

Though Joyce is still in the hospital and it has been touch and go for her it is with the help of all these prayer warriors she has made it this far. God saved my sister. It looks as though she will make it into the New Year. Thelma, Maggie, Marianne, Anne Glover, Millie Jones, Sing, you have been so kind and supportive. WE couldn't have made it without you.

Earthy Angels

Millie; I thank God everyday for having such a warm and wonderful person such as you in my life, you are a pillar of strength. You too are going through so much sadness. It never ceases to amaze me how a person can lose their loved one yet still have time to check up on someone else who is hurting. Millie you are an angel sent from God.

I know that I have many earthly angels and I have not been able to mention all of them here in this message. But what I have learned from this year, is that yes, there was pain, yes, there was suffering, but I was always surrounded by God's love. Even with the many obstacles thrown my way, God has shown me that I am not alone. I have all my heavenly and earthly angels to guide and protect me.



As we begin the New Year, I know that my God is with me and he will protect and comfort me all the days of my life. I may not be strong physically right now, but he has made me strong of character and strong in faith. I may not be financially comfortable, but I am rich because of the love and friendship that surrounds me. As I reflect upon 2003, I ask myself do I have any regrets? The only answer I can give is no I do not. I look forward to 2004 knowing that God will provide even greater things for me in this lovely New Year.


Book Writing, Financial Crisis, Health, Sickness, Year In Review

Meet the author

author avatar Carol Roach
Retired therapist and author of two books, freelance writer, newsletter editor, and blogger. I write, health, mental health, women's issues, animal , celebrity, history, and SEO articles.

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author avatar Eve Sherrill York
18th Jan 2015 (#)

You are sure lucky to these people who are so strong in your life. I sure wish that I had that in mine. My hat is off to you, my friend!

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author avatar Vickie Collins
18th Jan 2015 (#)

2003 was not your best year, it doesn't sound like, but here you are 11 years later and going strong. :)

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