For so many years I thought hope didn’t exist, or at least not for me. Hope is what other people had. For so long I lived in despair. I thought having a Learning Disability meant there was no hope to learn, be successful, or reach the goals I had in life.
I was so frustrated from failing after studying and working hard. I thought I couldn’t learn and wasn’t very smart. Slowly, the interventions and accommodations began to work. My grades began to improve. I still had to work harder, and find different ways to learn, but I began to see the glimmer of hope. School began to get easier in everything except math. Hope failed me in anything math related!
Despair began to creep in when we talked about my goals after high school. Many people thought that I would be limited in my choices. I was encouraged to go to trade school, even though nothing interested me. I decided to go to community college and study Early Childhood Education. The Physiatrist that evaluated me said I wouldn’t go beyond community college. I had professors who told me that I would be limited in my job choices because of my math difficulties. I also had professors that told me I was a bad writer. Hope is what encouraged me to seek a program of interest at a university with accommodations, and the least amount of math possible. Hope is what also encouraged me to send my work out and get published. It gives me so much happiness when people say that my story gave a person hope or a connection.
Hope is also what got me through being bullied in high school. People told me that I would never find love or a friend. I thought I was worthless and there was something wrong with me. I so wanted to fit in. Hope is what gave me the courage to reach out and make friends. Hope provided me the confidence that the right person would come along. How grateful I am for my husband!
I am not alone in my pursuit for hope. So many people put their hope in relationships, money, jobs, success and other things. All of these things are wonderful when they happen but they are only temporary. When things go wrong, then my hope evaporates.
During the Christmas season Christians celebrate the birth of a savior who brought hope. The purple candle on the advent wreath is the promises that a savior is coming in the most unexpected way.
My true hope is found in my faith in Jesus who gives me the hope that he will work out all things for good. I have seen this happen with my Learning Disability.
I still hear the voice of despair that tells me not to try and to just give up. What’s the point? It’s not going to work out. Hope is the the reassuring voice that drowns out despair and helps me work through doubt. Hope is not always warm fuzzies and rainbows. Hope often shows up when you least expect it. Having hope warms up the coldest of days and brings light on the darkest ones. Without hope I would truly be lost.