Hey friends! Welcome to the latest episode! As I started recording the intro, I realized that today is the two year anniversary of my breast cancer diagnosis. The memories of that day are ingrained on my heart forever. I remember feeling like I’d been punched in the gut and filled with disbelief and fear that threatened to paralyze me with grief. But I also remember the love, concern and care that was shown to me through friends, family and even strangers while I walked through one of the most fearful seasons of my life. And the many blessings I received from the kindness of others, especially those who had been through a similar diagnosis and the hope they gifted to me by sharing their own stories and experiences. If you’d like to read more about my cancer journey you can find it here.
That’s what I hope today’s episode will do for you. The last year and a half have been difficult for all of us. We’ve all suffered losses in one way or another. From my daughter-in-law not being able to have her nurse-pinning ceremony and subsequent graduation ceremony, to one of my best friend’s bot being able to attend her only son’s wedding ceremony, to the loss of my dad–we’ve all lost so much. The pain and heartache experienced in the wake of Covid has left many of us reeling and learning how to overcome and accept our grief.
That’s why I believe today’s guest, Marilyn Nutter and April White, will encourage and bring hope to so many listeners. Marilyn lost her husband suddenly to a massive heart attack several years ago and April was diagnosed with a rare disease that forced her to give up her career as a pharmacist. As a result, this led to not only mounting medical bills, but also much financial loss for her family. These women could have chosen to become bitter due to their tragic circumstances, but instead decided to join forces and write the book, Destination Hope: A Travel Companion When Life Falls Apart. One thing they want to do through this book is bring hope to those who are grieving any sort of loss and help people understand that the hit that knocked you down doesn’t have to keep you there. I hope this interview will lift you up and give you the inspiration you need to keep moving forward in God’s grace.
Highlights and Quotes From This Episode
“This illness threatened to derail my sense of worth and security and identity and as a result I’ve had to retire my pharmacist lab coat. I used to dispense medication and now I dispense hope. I’m a hope dealer.” – April
“Grief is a shared experience.” – Marilyn
“We were almost on a parallel path. We say she hung up her pharmacist coat in the back of the closet and I had to take off my wedding ring and put it in a jewelry box.” – Marilyn
“Loss is an equal opportunity scoundrel.” – Marilyn quoting April
“Grief is as unique as fingerprints. No two people grieve the same way, even people with the same loss.” – Marilyn
“Grieve in a way that’s right for you, because everybody grieves differently.” – advice given to Marilyn
“There’s nothing magical about a year.” – Marilyn referencing how people assume after one year things get easier
“Those branches aren’t always going to look that way and neither are you.” – the response Marilyn heard from God when she saw the bare winter branches out of her window soon after her husband passed away
Resources and Scriptures
I cling to you; your right hand upholds me. – Psalm 63:8
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. – Lamentations 3: 22-23
Order Marilyn and April’s book Destination Hope: A Travel Companion When Life Falls Apart
Griefshare grief counseling
The Red Sea Rules by Robert Morgan is a book April reads every year to encourage her
The Names of God is a type of book that comforted Marilyn after her husband’s death
The story Marilyn shared about how life can still be different but good: Welcome to Holland by Emily Perl Kingsley
Listen to this week’s episode What To Do When Your Life Falls Apart with Marilyn Nutter and April White