My Message of Hope

From Citi5.org

Dr. Nicole M. Eastman’s car was struck by a semi-truck three times on the expressway traveling at approximately 65 miles per hour. She shares her thoughts on purpose and hope for all.

What is Hope?

For me, hope is the reason that I get out of bed every morning. It is the reason that I drive despite my fears and anxiety that surfaced following my traumatic accident. It is why I am willing to spend up to 35 hours of my time per week going to physical therapy, therapeutic massage, individual psychological counseling, marriage counseling, orthopedic spine and family medicine doctor appointments. Hope is what fuels my desire to share my story, to write, to educate, to advocate, to listen, to learn, and to talk to God. Faith encourages my sense of hope. I feel that I have purpose left in this life and that is why I did not die on December 15, 2010. The state police officer who arrived on the scene said that he had expected a fatality; after all, my car was struck by a semi-truck three times on the expressway; and, that truck was traveling at approximately 65 miles per hour. How did I live? Why did I live? What is my purpose here? 

It took me facing my own death, watching every single aspect of my life fall apart in front of my eyes, and then feeling completely alone before I was able to wholeheartedly accept my faith. It took a man from my past to come back into my life to remind me of the fact that my work here on Earth is not complete. My accident had many life consequences. My marriage of only two weeks suffered. My sense of self was wiped away. My hyper-independence and ability to take care of myself was removed. My quality of life was drastically altered. My “friends” left me alone. I felt alone. 

I felt alone until one day I realized that my faith filled that void. Once I had this realization, then I was able to start my uphill journey to recovery. I am presently still on that journey, however, now I have a positive mindset. My hope for personal growth gained through adversity is what encourages me every single day to keep on living. Not only do I now live, I now live with a renewed sense of purpose. 

Where has hope taken me? 

I am finally to the point of “acceptance”. Although my life is still not as it used to be and I experience pain on a daily basis, I actually feel grateful. I feel grateful for the lessons I have learned, the people who I have met, the stories I have heard, and most importantly, the relationship with God that I have gained through this experience. Therefore, I feel grateful for who I have become. I could have just given up. I could have just fallen apart. However, that is not who I am. That is not who I was raised to be. My grandmother, bless her soul, always told me that I needed to be strong. I learn more and more every day what exactly that means. I find strength through my hope. I maintain the belief that things will get better and that I can choose to keep moving forward. 

In my efforts to help others I have started to share my story. I will speak to anyone willing to listen. I share it in efforts to let others know that they are not alone in their struggles. No matter what the hardship is. My experiences can relate to anyone who has experienced difficulties in their life due to circumstances or events beyond their control. In addition to speaking, I write. I write to express genuine care and understanding. I write to educate and advocate. I am learning to listen to others, which is necessary to grow as a person.

My message to you, my reader:  

    • Know that you have the potential, no matter what your current situation, to make great contributions to this world. Please do.
    • Know that your situation, despite however difficult it may currently be, does not have to be permanent. Trust me.
    • Know that you too have a purpose otherwise, you would not be here.
    • Realize that there is help out there. Ask and you shall receive.
    • Know that positive thinking can change the way you view your world.

At one time, at my lowest point when I felt great despair, I did not even believe this myself. I started doing self affirmations, like “My healing is already in progress” and “What you give out in the world is returned to you”. Now, several months later I actually see my world in a new way. In a way that emphasizes hope.

Finally, know that there are people like me, people who have never met you, who truly care about your well-being. I wish you the very best in life, my friend. 

With love and respect,
Dr. Nicole M. Eastman

“In all things it is better to hope than to despair” Johann Wolfgang von Goethe 

Dr. Nicole M. Eastman

 

 I want to send a special thank you to Chris Houts, the CEO and Founder of Citi5.org.  Thank you for finding my story inspirational and for asking me to share my message of hope with your organization. 

To my readers, please take a moment to look at the featured article as displayed at Citi5.org.

Thank you for reading this week.  I hope you have a wonderful week.