I was raised in a Christian home and school where learning Christian doctrine and values have always been paramount. As I became a young woman, I allowed myself to focus on the negative examples of the church and had walked away from it for a while. My faith in God, however, remained intact.
It wasn't until after my oldest daughter was born that I returned to the church, determined for her to know the person who died for her. This is the way I raised both of my daughter, despite my home environment consistently and progressively challenging me in their Christian upbringing.
As my girls were becoming young women themselves, I became more involved with women's ministry in the form of Bible and family studies, opening my home (when possible) to these beautifully broken women for God's healing to work in them. I wanted my girls to see this first hand. I had also taught Bible studies in a local nursing home for 10 years and have helped many come to Christ before they were called home.
As much as I fought for its salvation, my marriage did end. This, however, allowed me to pour more of myself into my ministry and even allowed me the immense privilege of serving as a missionary in Ecuador for 20 months. While there, I completely immersed myself in helping these absolutely beautiful Ecuadorian women know how much they are loved by our Lord and Savior. This helped them be open to God's Spirit to encourage and empower them to take their stand for His Kingdom, especially since many of them were involved in narcissistic relationships.
Since returning to the States, I have become very involved with my church in the capacity of co-leading several small groups, both officially and unofficially (Beautiful Women's Ministry, Bible Study, and Overcoming Fear: A Study of Peter). Seeing these women blossom into God's confident daughters has truly been my blessing! God is very good!
Hindsight truly is 20/20. I see why God has allowed me to go through my own narcissistic relationship. He has placed me in situations where I have acquired and dispensed knowledge. Most importantly, He has poured His love into and through me to help others who feel helpless. He is the one who has called me to reach His daughters in these situations and has equipped me with the tools necessary to help them see who He really is.
We know the importance of following God's direction in our lives, and I know this is His for me. It breaks my heart to see these women suffer the way they do, desperately trying to maintain that balance of serving God and being submissive to their husbands. It kills me even more when these young women don't recognize these behavior patterns in the young men they date and I truly want them to have God open their eyes so that they can make the right decision before it is too late. I've lived all of this, and then some. God woke me up and it's time these young women wake up as well. There is much to do for His Kingdom!
I have my BA in Psychology from Columbia College and my MSEd in Workforce Education and Development, with a concentration
in Human Resource Development from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.
My professional career has included academically advising a variety of first year, at-risk, and adult students in college and degree program selection, military and civilian transcript evaluation, financial aid and scholarship preparation, and
study and time management skills instruction. My career has also included coordinating student internship placements, resume and cover letter preparation, interviewing skills, professional dress and communication skills, and industry-
appropriate work ethic instruction.
Throughout my career in these roles, students, clients, and co-workers have felt comfortable enough to open up with me about their personal situations, oftentimes involving narcissistic relationships. They have revealed to me that my level of understanding and compassion, coupled with knowledge and personal experience, has helped them to see their situation more clearly and, when applied, they have been able to free themselves from the control of the narcissist and be more focused in directing their own lives.
I am a happy mother of two beautiful adult daughters. I have not, however, always been happy.
I was in a 20+ year narcissistic relationship that completely changed me. Prior to, I was a vivacious, spontaneous, driven person who absolutely loved life. I thought that's who he fell in love with. Little did I know that gradually his behavior
would lead me to believe otherwise.
My behavior gradually changed over the years as well. I became more withdrawn, self-conscious, and anxious, and had less self-confidence and self-worth. I felt very unattractive and unloved, even hated. I truly felt like a flower without sunlight and water, slowly withering. Unfortunately this is the woman and mother my daughters came to know. I didn't even recognize myself anymore. Quite ironic for a person whose name means lively!
Then all started to change one day when I asked God to show me who was really in my house, if He felt I was ready for His answer. I couldn't bear the abandonment, attention to and from other women, and looks of loathing any longer. That's when
He showed me the true meaning of certain bad situations - which I had, of course, made excuses for his behavior. I did not like who I was being shown. This, believe it or not, was the beginning of my healing. I was able to slowly detach myself emotionally from him and regain my confidence, self-worth and control.
Little did I know at that time that I had actually applied the principles of this program to myself without even realizing it. This is what God did for me. He knew I had learned what I needed to from that experience and it was now time to heal and eventually use what I've learned to help others be healed by Him. This is His purpose for me. What is His purpose for you? Will you allow Him to heal you and show you?