With the holiday and my husband and my anniversary falling on Easter I was unable to write a blog post. Here’s a old one. I hope you enjoy it.


In many of my blogs, I mentioned determination, but I have not talked about what determination is. How do you define determination? Is it the ability to make it through one more day of sadness? Is it the choice to face daily struggles? Is it the ability to stand up to life’s challenges? Or is it how you stand up to all of these challenges?


To me determination is to face life’s challenges with all the strength and willpower within you. It’s not giving up when everything around you seems dark and hopeless. It’s pushing forward when you feel as if you cannot go on anymore. It’s surpassing all odds and reaching forward when others have lost faith in you. Determination is the key to recovery from many disabilities, illness, and specially mental illness.

In grade school and high school, I struggled with a learning disability. My classmates and teachers thought I wasn’t smart enough to pass my classes or to have a future. In elementary my school teachers assigned a student to give me answers on tests. I was told that I would be pushed from one grade to the next because I couldn’t pass on my own.  I decided to prove to them I could pass my classes on my own. In high school, I found ways to work around my disability and pass my classes with A’s. I pushed forward against all odds and graduated with scholarships and honors. I decided I was going to prove to my classmates, teachers, and the world I was not stupid. With determination, I went to college, earned a degree, and held a job for twenty-four years.

Close up of a report card with a pen

I applied this same determination to my mental illness. My life seemed hopeless and the dark hole endless. I lost faith in myself and when I was hospitalized, I dug deep down inside for the strength to climb out of the hole. I decided I did not want to live my life in darkness. I wanted to find happiness and to live a normal life. I felt like I was dying inside, but I pushed through it to reach towards the light. I mustered up all the strength I could to stand up to my illness. I pushed onward even though I could barely get out of bed or face the next day. It was the hardest challenge I ever had to face, but with determination, I reached recovery.

I’m now using all my inner strength to face physical health problems and to keep within the light. It would be easy to get depressed at the thought of facing another surgery and waking up each day with pain, but I will push forward.


It’s determination that has helped me through all my life challenges and has helped me grow into the person I am. If you’re not determined enough to stand up to your illness against all odds, then you’ll sit at the bottom of the hole in complete darkness. Stand up, take control of your life and your illness. Push forward against all odds and climb the walls of the hole. Because of my determination, I stand at the top of the hole and I bathe in the light of happiness.

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