I survived! What a ride! Another amazing year has passed and I am forever transformed from its lessons, learned and unlearned. After experiencing the devastating loss of losing my mother to a long-term battle with Alzheimer’s in 2016, I made 2017 my year of “doing Kimberly”. If you read any of my blogs, you’d know that I love to travel. I celebrated my 54th birthday in Las Vegas in February. Traveled to Oklahoma to visit family in May. Attended a wedding in Kansas City in October, and celebrated my 25th wedding anniversary while attending a destination wedding in Maui, Hawaii. These amazing trips truly blessed me and others! One of my greatest accomplishments however, was stepping out on faith and creating this web-based platform to inspire and motivate the 50 plus generation that went live in September. I quit my on-call, no benefit, event assistant job in June to devote all my time and energy into developing this site platform after months of strong conviction. Upon investing most of my savings, I saw an opportunity to gain funding and take my business to the next level through a reputable source. However, the last couple of months have been wrought with confusion and setbacks in my attempts to secure funding to grow the business and take 50+ShadesofUs to the next level. Even though I took each roadblock in stride, understanding that challenges are a part of life, I came up against financial attacks from various entities from every corner. I finally began to realize that this was no fluke! This was spiritual warfare at work. It had me bound to the point that I withdrew into myself, questioning my journey moving forward. Some battles I overcame and some I had to let go…and let God! The month of December left me drained to the point that I could not blog or offer anything to my 50+ family as I struggled to pull myself from the grips of uncertainty with my business. Even as I prayed and continued to go to church to get understanding and be uplifted, even as I continued to sow financial seeds as a testament to my unshakable faith, all while I’m “robbing Paul to pay Peter”. Now, what do you do when you have no more Paul’s to pay Peter? Now mind you, I’ve pretty much lived paycheck to paycheck my entire working life. So this was, by far, not anything new. But, what was different was the level and intensity this financial struggle became. It was non-stop from October thru December and still ongoing into the New Year. Just unbelievable! My saving grace was my two sons coming home for the Christmas holiday with their family that I shifted into Supermom and NaNa mode to create the most loving and cherished moments with them! Both my children live out of state, so their tradition of coming home for the holidays reigns supreme! My husband and I always go the extra mile by spending quality time and making our home warm and festive to share meaningful memories with our friends and family. Not just during the holidays but throughout the year. My other saving grace, during these difficult times, is my husband. We usually bump heads concerning finances, as he’s more of a spender, and I saver. However, even he was not fully aware of the level of despair I sank into. I learned early in life that I had to depend on myself, which strengthened my independent nature. I’m not one for asking for help until I’ve absolutely exhausted all other means. My husband, my rock for nearly forty years, has supported me and my vision; although reluctantly at first, but has rallied around me during these trying times. God always provides a way of escape, no matter the difficulty! There is always someone in your path that He sends at the right time, even if only for a season, to make the narrow roads wide, and the crooked paths straight. All you have to do is activate it in your life by calling out to Him. Whatever you’re facing right now or in the future, just know that It too shall pass! Weeping may endure for a night, but joy will come in the morning time! I am, and will continue being a testament to you as God molds me to become who I am called to be. “For it is in Him we live, and move, and have our being” <Acts 17:28> Be Blessed in 2018!!!