The Problem I’m Chewing On: Healing, Scars, and Restoration

I take a problem and chew on it until all the flavor’s gone… and then I stick it in my hair.

Divine Secrets of The Ya-Ya Sisterhood.

I was thumbing through my first published Bible Study Unbroken* the other day and I came across Day 13 titled “Accepting the Scars.” As I read my words from 2016 I had to chuckle. I had no clue what was coming, or how the message of Unbroken would play out in my life when I filed for divorce one year later. Truth be told when I wrote the book I was in one of the rare happy seasons of my first marriage. But, three months after we published, I would give my wedding ring back and ask for a separation.

This is one of the pitfalls of being a writer.

You get to read past works and words you wrote with the 20/20 vision of hindsight. And that can be a good thing… but sometimes its bad, ugly, and cringe worthy. I had no idea what embracing the cracks that are making me whole (Unbroken’s tag line) would mean to me five years later.

I still believe that message. Maybe even more now than I did in 2016. I’ve embraced my broken pieces, re-built from the ashes, and let the cracks of my life become sources of beauty and strength. What I thought was going to be a marriage restoration story took a sharp turn and became a ME restoration story. It wasn’t going to play out like Eat, Pray, Love. More like Midwest mediocre. But, I found myself in the rubble. I found my purpose and passion in that mess. Discovering strength I didn’t know I had; and, teaching my kids that our choices matter even when they are hard.

New wounds came. Old scars were revealed. And beauty grew in the most unlikely places.

scars blog green sprout

Here’s what I wrote back in 2016…

After a storm rages through our lives, we are left with broken pieces. When we choose to accept the process of restoration those wounds start to heal. Sometimes after a wound heals a scar remains. Scars are reminders. Sometimes scars are on the outside; but, more often than not, your scars will not be visible to the naked eye. Your deepest wounds are rarely on the surface.

I can’t tell you how many times I have people tell me, “I had no idea you were even struggling,” or “I didn’t realize your marriage was that broken,” when they hear my story. When I look back at pictures during the worst seasons of my life I can see the light is gone from my eyes. On the outside things looked OK. I didn’t look sick. The truth is, when you look at someone who has overcome the odds, you will not always see the scars on her body. They are on her mind and heart.

Scars are reminders.

They remind us of why we are the way we are. Scars tell us of who we’ve been. They remind us of the lessons we have learned on life’s journey. The wounds they cover remind us of the things and people we’ve lost. They remind us of our courage and God’s faithfulness. Scars are a reminder that even the deepest wounds will eventually heal.

We have to get really good at accepting every chapter of our story, even the dark ones, because this is how we comfort our sisters, mothers, daughters, and best friends. When we can share the truth about the scars in our lives we give another woman courage. When we bravely share our weaknesses, another woman find the strength to take one step forward into the light. We comfort others with the same comfort we have been given.

It’s time to appreciate and celebrate those hard earned wounds. Those battle scars are important. Your scars are proof that we can all do hard things. Don’t hide them. Don’t pretend they aren’t there. Embrace the scars. Embrace the broken places and the healed areas of your life. Your vulnerability inspires others.

with Grace & Grit,

~Raychel

*The Unbroken Bible study has been retired, However you can still find it in our Faith Coaching Bundle from RAYMA Team, LLC. Click here to find out more!

Before you go, here are three quick ways to stay in touch: 

  • Find out if I’m the right coach for you, or the perfect speaker for your next event by clicking here!
  • Follow me on my favorite social media platform, Instagram.
  • Subscribe to the She Who Overcomes Podcast on iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. Co-hosted by myself and my BFF and business partner Mandy B. Anderson, She Who Overcomes is a weekly series of real-life stories and conversations that provides the listener with hope and action steps to transform your life, leadership, and career.

Home Schooling During the Coronavirus Crisis

I’m going to make a safe bet and say that you were not prepared to tackle home school, working from home, social distancing, and self-quarantining all at the same time. I wasn’t either. But here we all are. Just trying to figure out how to survive home schooling during the coronavirus crisis.

Believe it or not, this isn’t my first rodeo with homeschooling.

When our oldest was in 2nd grade we removed her right before Christmas and home schooled for the rest of the school year. We were working with an OT to help her with some anxiety issues and sensory processing delays; and, not being in a traditional classroom helped her so much.

But let’s be real for a minute. You are not used to having them home AND teaching AND working at the same time. It’s enough to make you want to hide in your closet and cry. Or run away. But everything is closed so we must stay and survive the best we can. Here are some tips that can help: 

How to survive homeschooling during the coronavirus crises.

#1- Create a schedule but don’t reinvent the wheel

I did create a daily schedule for my kiddos because I need it so I know when I can work uninterrupted (hopefully!) and take clients and schedule virtual meetings. You probably need one as well. But don’t reinvent the wheel. I can guarantee your child already has a schedule they follow every week in school. If your teacher hasn’t sent it to you already, ask for it.

Base your home school schedule on their school schedule. Take out the times for recess, lunch, and extracurricular activities and you will notice the actual learning time is easy to replicate at home. If they have math in the morning at school. They have math in the morning at home. Most teachers have probably sent all kinds of links for you to find online education sites, and ideas for offline education.

#2- Do only what is necessary and possible

Now is not the time to let overwhelm get the best of you. Do only what is necessary and possible each day. One day at a time. You are not a superhero and we are all in uncharted territory. When you are feeling overwhelmed, slow down and take a moment to breathe and think about what is necessary and possible in that moment. Nothing more. Nothing less. Only what is necessary and possible.

#3- Make time for rest to survive home schooling during the Coronavirus

Fear and fatigue go hand in hand. Fatigue is real right now and it causes you to be short-tempered, impatient, and mean. It will make you to do things and say things that in your right mind you would never do, or say. Make sure you are making sleep a priority during this time. Having enough sleep will have a huge impact on how you survive home schooling during the coronavirus.

#4- Don’t forget the fun

This time is a gift. I will admit it’s in a pretty crappy package. But a global pandemic can still be a gift if we choose to look at it that way. An invitation to slow down and connect in real time with our family. Build forts, make cookies, go on walks, play games, listen to a book together, have movie marathons, do spa nights, take long drives, work on a puzzle together, sleep in, connect with family members over Face time, stay in your jammies all day, and have dance parties. We will only survive this time if we remember to have fun and make memories with our families.

#5- Reach out for help

When you are feeling overwhelmed to the point of hurting yourself, or your child, reach out for help. There is ZERO shame in reaching out. The pressure is intense right now and it’s OK if you don’t know how to navigate it all. Put a movie on for the kids, put the baby in their crib, find a quiet spot in the house, garage or yard, and just breathe for a few minutes. Call a friend, call a national hotline, or connect in an online group for support.

  • National Domestic Violence hotline: 1-800-799-7233         1-800-787-3224 (TTY)
  • EveryMind hotline: 301-738-2255 (EveryMind’s trained staff and volunteers provide supportive listening, information and resource referrals, and crisis intervention (including suicide assessments) through telephone, text, and chat services.
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.8255

If you are going to survive home schooling during the coronavirus you must reach out for help when it becomes too much. This is uncharted waters. And it can be scary to be in a crisis. But, one day at a time we will all get through this.  Do only what is necessary and possible. And, don’t forget to rest and have fun.

With Grace & Grit,

~Raychel


Before you go, here are 3 ways to stay in touch: