First off, thank you for everything you all have done and thank you for an amazing podcast. My story is pretty much a whole bunch of little things all crammed into one.
Here we go: I was born July 4, 1991, two months early. Dr.’s didn’t give me a fighting chance, but being born on the 4th makes you independent. I showed them. I grew up pretty normal, learning respect and hard work ethics on our family farm. When I was 8, two major events happened. 1. I was in an ATV accident that left me with an ugly scar on my neck. (and I would later end up being bullied) 2. I was diagnosed with epilepsy (and not the version where you can outgrow it) I’ve gone through at least 4 medication changes and 3 neurologists. I didn’t get my license till I was 19. I wanted to join the military, but because I’m on medication, they declined me. I won’t lie, that broke my heart. I wasn’t entirely sure what I wanted to do with life so I didn’t go to college. So I did what you do when you don’t know. I got a job; working on my family’s upgraded dairy farm. I milk cows and have been there for almost 10 years. Working with family has its ups and downs, but I wouldn’t change where I am. It’s not easy work, but it’s what makes us who we are.
We could quit given that the dairy market sucks, but we don’t because it’s in our blood. I’m not saying life has been easy for me. Having epilepsy changed everything. Also dealing with some depression didn’t help. When I was 21, I hit an all time low and I cut myself. I just wanted the pain to go away. But I learned that hurting yourself doesn’t make it go away. I got the help I needed and I haven’t relapsed since. I know that there’s people out there who have it worse than me. I also don’t know why I was given the fight I was. I sometimes get mad or frustrated. I cry because “it’s not fair.” Why me? And then I’ll tell myself, “get over it, move on. You’re still the strong person you were yesterday.”
I was given this fight because God gives His toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. “I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.” My favorite verse of all time; so much so that I got a tattoo of it on my shoulder. I look back at everything so far and realize that at only 27, I’ve been through a lot. If life wants to throw another curveball at me, I’ll hit it out of the park. This is my fight and I’m never out of the fight!