I spend my time writing about how to balance faith and difficult times. I have both mental illnesses and chronic illnesses, but I’m learning to thrive anyway.

I’ve never been good friends with normal, but I’m well-acquainted with disappointment and pain. I guess that’s why Redefining Normal is part of the code here, because it’s been part of my journey.

I’m still learning how to hold tight to the great and good God who never abandons us, even when it seems He is silent. The silent days are really hard, I’m not gonna lie. But it’s worth it, because there’s nowhere else for me to turn to find hope and wholeness.

As a child, I knew what it was to live in fear, because I grew up in a physically and psychologically abusive household. I once won an award in school for writing a mostly autobiographical story called Reign of Terror. One of the judges asked if I was seeing a counselor.

I also know firsthand the confusion and pain of a life interrupted by illnesses. My daughter is autistic and epileptic, and I have a host of mental and chronic illnesses too. The “most exciting” illness is drop attacks, where my body just goes limp without warning. So far, the dozens of doctors I’ve seen haven’t been able to figure out what to make of these drop attacks, but I’m hopeful for a meaningful diagnosis someday.

I also know how to fight and win the battles I face. There are a bunch of keys I’ve learned along the way, but probably the most important one is to never go it alone. I’ve found a tribe of people who are with me, no matter what. They lend me strength when I needs it, and I do the same for them. Together, we are conquering fear and leaning hard into faith.