Last May, I was still a fresh mess.

I had just moved to a small, new house with my three kids, ages 19, 17 and 5, and left behind a house we call "the dungeon". I had to borrow money to close on the sale, due to having to pay almost $9,000 to the IRS and New York State for my husband's self-employment back-taxes.

After being controlled and abused for 22 years, he was finally removed, and we could breathe. The transition was rough. I was scared to death, constantly looking over my shoulder. If I had a dime for every time he'd say,  "A piece of paper won't stop me!" I wouldn't have to work again. The second part of it was usually, "I will find you, and kill you," being stared down with daggers as he made his face tremble to reinforce to me, that he was crazy enough to do it. 

Two of what appeared to be the nicest people you'd ever meet, hurt me deeply. My husband and my old boss, well everybody loved them. 

Here I sat in this new house, with these people that I gave birth to, that I felt like I didn't even know. I wasn't allowed to talk to them unless my husband was present. I had a long climb ahead.

Then I lost my job. My old boss is notorious for "turn and burn." He owes me a few hundred dollars that I'll never see; he fought my unemployment case and won. The one payment I received, I had to pay back. Nice guys sometimes do finish last. I felt like the world was laughing at me. I was tired of defending myself. The insecurities nearly drowned me. 

I started my own business, since I'd worked every position of IT:  receptionist, office manager, dispatch, sales, project management, HR, accounting, even field technician.

As I quickly ran out of money and recieving nothing from the ex in support, I questioned my decisions. I stepped out into my backyard early on May 6 and said aloud, "Am I doing the right thing?" as I stared at and absorbed the beauty of the sky and the green spring grass. 

I looked down and something caught my eye. I did a double-take. I grew a smile from ear to ear, and said, "Thank you!" I took a picture with my phone.  Looking at me smack in the face, was two tiny shreds of wood, that formed a perfect cross.

Since then, I find the strength to keep going. Any time I feel the smallest shred of self-doubt, I end up seeing something spectacular. It happened so  much, I started bringing my camera everywhere. And it still happens. If I could get paid to share this, I would do it full time.

I have so much more to share. Bring me back. :)