BY KARI HILBORN
A STORY OF RESILIENCE
FINDING STRENGTH WITHIN THE STRUGGLE
How one woman's pursuit to ease her chronic pain led her to find unbreakable inner strength and lasting empowerment.
The shocking truth behind Chronic illness
2015 was the year that took so much!
My health, my career, my family, my financial stability and all my hopes and dreams.
I couldn’t say exactly which event was the catalyst for my illness but looking back now I honestly don’t know how I survived this period of my life. Life brought one tragic event after another and as fast as one was managed, another 50 arrived in it's wake.
Shockingly, these tragic events piled up over the years until there were so many to manage I began drowning under the waves of despair.
Losing my career was a huge blow to my ego. My life as I knew it was over!
Six years was spent studying; a degree, then a Masters, and finally qualifying to be a teacher and it all seemed to be for nothing.
I was now unable to function. My friends disappeared, family were almost all gone through death and mental illness and my wife and I were left in the midst of poverty, ill health and tragedy.
Drowning in a multitude of problems and emotional trauma there seemed to be no way out… and so I sank.
Watching my mum lose her life to cancer so unjustly, seemed to trigger me into a state of despair.
How could something so horrific happen to such a kind soul and be aligned with the laws of the universe. I lost my faith, my hope and the will to fight.
The powerless of not being able to save her propelled me into a state of fear and I wondered if I was destined to keep losing the people I loved?
Trapped in a mindset of fear, before long, these patterns in thinking became habits.
Habits that subconsciously began playing out on a loop and started attracting more negativity into my life. The worst part was... I wasn't even aware of it!
Over the next few years, the tragic events kept coming and my ability to cope lessened but I had one solace left: My wife. She was my rock and I was hers and we kept each other strong.
I prayed each day that things would change and that we would get our life back but the day never came?
Grasping at straws we decided to uproot our lives and move to Spain, hoping that we might change our lives for the better, but not long after we arrived the marriage started imploding.
The stress of 5 years of living in hell had taken its toll on the relationship could no longer hold out. My last remaining crutch fell apart and we moved back home to separate,
Life has a funny way of kicking you when you're down
Living with the heartache of yet another loss was soul destroying but deep down I knew it was for the best.
I moved in with my daughter for a while and in this time encountered my final test.
It was a test that would propel my soul into the darkest of limits, wrench out all old wounds for healing and send me into a spiral of confusion and hopelessness like no other.
I met my twin flame!
She would be my greatest tool for understanding both the ethereal and transcendental realms. A complete, all-encompassing love polarised with true suffering. This relationship brought anguish so gut wrenching it resembled an addiction and I was propelled into a deep spiritual awakening.
Our relationship lasted for only 6 months but in this time I was able to rapidly accelerate my healing through immense pain.
Although I was propelled into a deep spiritual healing, I noticed my health declining rapidly. I felt like a broken compass, lost in my direction and powerless to change anything.
And yet again another deep loss occurred.
Then came COVID. Lockdown hit and the distractions disappeared, which meant I had nowhere to escape the permeating thoughts of loss and grief. I was all alone and forced to confront the deep wounds that needed healing.
Finally after months of anguish my warrior took over and I knew I had to do something to transform the suffering.
My sense of fight took over and I charged into action, researching and learning all I could and building upon my previous tools and techniques.
I discovered new ways to heal that I had never even thought of before and my transformation began.
Although I had spent most of my thirties researching healing tools for the development of others, I hadn't done the work myself. I had been bypassing my own healing and now there was no way out. I had to face it but what I wasn't prepared for was how hard it was going to be.
It meant digging deep into past traumas and sitting with the very real feelings of suffering and allowing them to be. Not trying to change anything. Just finding a way to surrender and accept.
This time however, I felt divinely guided. There was a spiritual charge to the work and I was able to process that pain in a way the was transcendent.
Divine guidance was at its root and I was led to books, podcasts, documentaries and articles on healing.
The concept was coming through so loudly and from a range of different sources: Eckart Tolle, Michael Singer, Tosha Silver and others all said the same thing:
Then I read this by Rebekkah Ladyne (2020)…
“The more extreme stress you have lived through the more your brain is trapped in the past and the worse your brain is at noticing the truth of today. Adding insult to injury the more extreme stress you store in your system the more reactive your brain is to any triggers related to stress."
A wave of relief ran through my body when I read this and the voice of my higher self whispered to me. Its time! Just Surrender.
And then it all suddenly made sense.
I surrendered to having no financial stability. I surrendered to having no partner. I surrendered to the loss of my teaching career, I surrendered to my grief and loneliness, but most importantly I surrendered to not having anything near the life that I expected I would have by the age of 40 and I honestly didn’t care. My ego started to dissolve.
I started to feel absolute gratitude for everything just as it was. I started to become present and self-loving.
I began using the affirmation:
In this present moment all is perfect, whole and complete.
And I repeated it on loop.
This sparked a re-framing within my brain that stemmed from a state of love, peace and acceptance. I began to see the world differently and my negative mindset was transforming.
Yes - all these traumatic things had happened, and yes, they had caused me so, so much pain, but I had learned some phenomenal lessons and had come through it all stronger than before.
Clawing myself out of the deepest, darkest hole gave me incredible resilience.
I knew I had been to hell and back and survived and from this mental standpoint nothing could EVER hurt me again!
It was this moment that my higher - self found its position.
The warrior within me was born!
I was finally living from a place of freedom and alignment.
Connected to my truth.
And content to just be.