A Work In Progress...

Just a few years ago, right before the recession, I was on top of the world.  I had a high paying, high profile and high pressure career as a Quality and Training Consultant for a top rated insurance conglomerate.  My manic plans included a move to Hartford, CT to work in home office and basically had it in my mind to run the entire company as a five year goal.

However, being a person of natural discontent, I eagerly quit my AWESOME job to brave the world of insurance sales.... BIG MISTAKE.  I really SUCKED at sales, people could smell my fear and my obvious apologetic approach kept me from making a single sale the entire six months I worked for the company.

Fortunately, I was able to find work back in my chosen profession as a nurse case manager for a large hospital system.  However, at the time, my marriage was falling apart, we were financially bankrupt from two unsuccessful career changes (his and mine), we all had chronic medical issues, out the roof co-payments and to top it off our son was admitted into and inpatient psych hospital for 4 months.  I lost that job on top of everything else going on in my life.

My world was spiraling out of control and I couldn't help but lay on the floor in fetal position asking God - 'WHERE ARE YOU?" - LITERALLY.

I was in a place of loneliness and isolation, finding myself in mid-life asking, "Is this it?"  and came to a conscious attitude that - HECK NO!  I want to live again.

What happened to that guitar playing, singing, tree hugging, artist hippie girl of my youth?  I had become a frumpy, depressed, Xanax chomping middle aged drone of a housewife and simply had to reclaim my life.  Damn the consequences.

Now, I'm writing again, continuing to take photographs and fulfilling my creative desires in new and different ways.  And like any masterful piece of art, the finished product has yet to reveal itself, but at least I'm painting the picture.




DrewBerry DrewBerry
46-50, F
64 Responses Sep 26, 2009

Awesone! You rule over anything! We are designers of our own ways

JUST HANG ON TO THE LIGHT!...no matter what happened!

Just don't give up! >_o

The social rat race takes the dreamer out of us all. We all can take a lesson from you, what is life really if you forget who you are in it? Thanks for the experience!

We all have to start over from time to time. I feel like I never really got my start and I'm still starting from scratch. It's ok, though... You know the people who have given up and given in to their circumstances. That is not who anybody wants to be. Struggle, move forward... at least you're getting somewhere!

Precisely ~ never lose hope. EVERYDAY is a NEW BEGINNING.. Like DORY in FINDING NEMO " JUST KEEP SWIMMING".. :)

He is doing well. Thanks for asking K~

Good show! you will come up trumps. by the way, how is your son? is he all right; I hope he is in safe hands.

Took the same road, sold my soul for the all mighty dollar then doubted if it was all worth it. I think it's called work life balance, if you lose your creative spark, you lose your mind.... of course, there are some people who have no idea what that means, and they're the corporate drones who have no soul (but we don't talk a about them).

Aw Amb ~ no more than anyone else here pouring out their hearts and soul.... It's good to read these old stories though as see when life has taken me these past few years.<br />
<br />
Bless xxxx

Drew. You are one honest soul! I'm impressed! It takes courage to expose oneself like that......I'm taking notes! .........Great stuff!......Very cool! You're to be commended......you must have many friends!<br />
All my best to ya!

Thank you Sinofile - that is sage advice. Made my day!<br />

thanks Number Nine!


Thanks for the book / movie recommendation OneandOne... I appreaciate the read and encouragement.<br />
<br />

If you haven't read Eat, Pray & Love, check it out.....the movie is coming this summer with Julia Roberts plays Elizabeth. I'm leaving the faith of choice out of the equation at the moment, not wanting to ruin it for you, but her story of soul searching as she was falling apart and found herself again was inspiring......I see yours has somewhat similar elements.....I enjoyed the book, nonetheless and have become a fan ... as I like her writing style. Writing, painting or cooking are forms of arts and can be soul soothing tools. Bravo to you!

You are SO RIGHT Smugit!!! Excercise is well known to fight off the blues.<br />
<br />
Finally, Sping has sprung here in Tennessee and we hope to hit the river on a canoe trip this weekend! I can't wait.

You know what will cheer you up and get you out and might even make you smile, walking you should walk more often like say a little dog sitting around in a chair maybe just for good company and a way to get out and have a good time, sound like fun? lol

Ah MtnMig - You have your own inspiring story of survival. You're determination will carry you well beyond -personal expectations and I'm sure you will find your place. I'm not exactly proud of the path that has brought me here today, but I am thankful I am here relatively intact. Honestly, I don't know what else I could have done other than check myself into the state run mental hospital up the road, but eventually, we all have to face our lives and deal with those realities that plague us all. <br />
<br />
You have my thoughts and prayers MM! Hang tough!

Inspiring Drew you are clearly a wonderful person and I am glad that you rose above all this. Thank you for sharing<br />
<br />
I am working right now to rise from the ashes. 10 years ago a brain injury nearly ended everything I worked for in a most cruel way. It left my intellect unaffected but screwed up my short-term memory. I wished that I had just died instead. My dreams of becoming a scientist seemed dead and the beautiful woman that I adored divorced me. I left my beloved Montana with all my belongings in an old Volvo and a few hundred dollars in my wallet. <br />
<br />
I’m learning to live with my less capable brain as best as I can and I am now working on completing a Ph.D. in biology. If I manage to publish my research this year I may still find my place in the sciences. I continue to hold on to hope, it is all that I have.

True that AmERICA. I will remember indeed next time I get lost... and it will happen again; a part of the refining process we all must endure to become whom we are supposed to be.<br />
<br />
ooh deep. <br />
<br />
thanks E.

Wow! Thanks for posting. <br />
I know exactly how you feel. <br />
But here is what I say when you sometimes "lose" yourself: <br />
"I’ve lost myself again. It seems I periodically do this. I almost have to lose myself in order to refind myself again."<br />
<br />
Just remember that when you are wondering what happened to that "guitar playing, singing, tree hugging, artist hippie girl of my youth".

and love to you angel.<br />
<br />

BCJ - You are such a faithful friend and so encouraging.<br />
<br />
I just started a new position doing my old job of Quality and Training. The people I work with are like family; we literally sit around the kitchen table and eat lunch like the Waltons. It feels like home - at last<br />
<br />
It's funny how good things can come from adversity. <br />
<br />
~ Here to happier times ~<br />
<br />
((((((((( BIG HUG MY FRIEND )))))))

my angel. you remain in my prayers. God was there when you asked. <br />
<br />
love<br />

Yeah GM - this is true. I'm not out of the rough water yet, but it's no longer a hurricane at least.<br />
<br />
Thanks for the read and encouraging comment.<br />
<br />

I am relieved by that too Blue. LOL

Have no fear. Obama is here. OMG<br />
Sorry, couldn't help myself.

I really doubt I'll make it to prime minister of my own household restec, but the thought is nice nonetheless. We do just keep on keeping on - it's all we can do sometimes. I like the thought; Churchhill has always been a hero of mine and it's comforting to know it's possible to rise to the top inspite of our demons!<br />
<br />
Mother - thanks for your encouragement, as always.<br />
<br />

I guess that everyone was thinking it, and some actually wrote it : good on you, Drew! Churchill called it KBO (Keep B... On) when trying to cope with his "black dog", his depressions. Keep going onwards, Drew, because it's always worth it. Perhaps you'll become a next prime minister of Brittain in your sixties.

Thanks Napoleon - I'll remember that. :)

Good for you! I think there are a lot of us in the same kind of situation,and even if we haven't quite figured out how to make money by being creative, we are reclaiming our souls. Keep it up.

I'd love to write a novel - actually have something in the works, a collaborative effort with someone else.. his story and I'm throwing down the verbage.. not sure its working.There are some interesting links for writers.. how to develop fictional characters from a psychologically correct perspective.. I need to learn how to write dialog too.. Writing can be so arduous, but I am compelled to get all the crap out of my head... I'm sure you know what that's like Dex.Thanks for the read and kudos!!

Thank the stars and deities you really sucked at insurance sales, DB. Otherwise we may have missed out on you as a writer.<br />
<br />
The life picture you are painting will be truly a work of art, full of experience and insight, skilfully executed. <br />
<br />
Oh, and it sounds a lot like a novel I'm writing...

Thank You softkitti.

Bravo! .. *sighs* there are times that quiting seems like the easier and best way to go ....and its true that it is easier but fighting for ones happiness that is a struggle that is truly worth the effort<br />
Thank you for this post ...it is inspirational and thougt provoking

Thank GAWD - bcj loves me! <br />
<br />
I'd hate to start all over in my quest for enlightenment and contentment.<br />
<br />
~ my life is complete ~<br />
<br />

and i simply love this new you.<br />

yeah dukelko.. what other choice do we have?

What - tasting sweet freedom or releasing him of accountability? <br />
<br />
It was a huge price to pay, for all of us, but at the time - I saw no other way... Scared and Scolded.... I crawled out of the pit of despair.<br />
<br />
at least I'm treading water now, no longer sinking.. drowning.<br />
<br />
~ just keep swimming ~

beautiful, sweet, crazy.<br />
<br />
your last line is such a twist in the tail<br />
<br />
love<br />

I feel for you Luna; having come out the other side... <br />
<br />
Sadly, I'm still feeling the fallout (i.e. guilt) from walking away from that 17 year relationship. DH barely talks to me.<br />
<br />
When I brought that to my son's attention the other night he said: 'Well what do you expect, you basically walked out on him'! OUCH!<br />
<br />
Yes - I AM THE EVIL ONE who left.. If it ******* makes him feel better to blame me for RUINING HIS LIFE - then I guess I've done him a good deed in releasing him from all accountability.... <br />
<br />
Oh well... aint no going back now... I've tasted <br />
<br />
~ S-W-E-E-T F-R-E-E-D-O-M ~

I'm going through the same process,<br />
I was a dedicated wife to the point<br />
I stop caring about myself, giving a <br />
100% to everybody that I lost the <br />
Real me, made myself the same question,<br />
What happened to the I used to be, the one<br />
With a big smile on her face, the one with<br />
Dreams and Passion for life? All this remembering<br />
My old crazy a** personality I'm getting <br />
Divorce and hoping things workout for me<br />
Cuz I have a girl, right now I'm on that <br />
Stage where I'm finding myself back again<br />
Trying to get better at the things I like<br />
Taking pictures, love decorating my personal<br />
Webpage, do crafts, I haven't done the <br />
Most important one -->Dance, but any <br />
Ways the list goes on, I'm enjoying what <br />
I'm doing and looking foward to try new<br />
Exciting experiences, just reading your<br />
Story made me realize I'm not the only<br />
One who's been through a hard time and <br />
Try to get back again on her feet, thanks<br />
For sharing that =)

yea girlie and I've been through quite a bit of your Sh_t too (literally)~ ***** and giggles ~

Thanks much Joe - It's good to know there is time left to climb that ladder again. <br />
<br />
~ I think I can.. I think I can.. choo choo ~

Just read your story, if the product won't sell itself then it's the products fault, not yours...; ) Life is all snakes and ladders, and I've slipped down those slippery little critters and ended up on my a$$ on the bottom rung more times than I'd like to disclose, the fun part is climbing up to the top rung again, especially with a brand new perspective, and a host of interesting new friends!...;-)<br />
<br />
Kudos, nicely written story, WELL DONE!

bcj & mewold --- MWAH!<br />
<br />
You got it IndigoSpirit.... Well said. It's exactly what I was trying to relay.<br />
<br />

Interesting - I'm going through the same thing myself. My divorce was four years ago and it seems like I was in this "neither here nor their" state right up recently. I'm mid life myself and have been "re-inventing" myself. Although I've had friends say "no, don't change!" I've had to explain that I meant more like a return to who I once was when I was younger - pursuing old passions in writing, art, and studying other cultures as well as learning new skills. All the best to you! It's nice to know there are others out there like ourselves.

Think Positive.......Think Positive.......Think Positive. Sometimes this is the hardest thing to do. But the alternitive is unecceptable.

well done milady<br />
<br />
in some movie they said, "It's you and me against the world, kid"<br />
<br />
Or as my sis in cali says "fuckem"<br />
<br />
don't let anything hold you down<br />
<br />
I am impressed.<br />
<br />
love <br />

~ YEAH ! ~

I am so happy you are reconnecting with your essence! Happy Recovery! Stay in the present and joy that life has to offer!

I thought I was still in my youth........

Gary - you describe it so eloquently, thanks so much.<br />
<br />
and Mewold - I don't think any of our lives ever turn out to be what we envisioned in our youth. <br />
<br />
Just keep swimming.

Love the story, DB. I retired when I was 60. I started having problems when I was 60. They got serious when I was 64. This is not how I envisioned my retirement unfolding. But I am still alive and striving for inprovement. I can empethise with you. I have never been able to spell.

You are such an inspirational person, DB! Much like what you describe your life to be, it takes millions of carefully placed brush strokes, each with its own unique direction, color and personality to make a masterpiece. Each would be incomplete without the next, and the previous, one building upon the other, working together to complete the beauty of the end product. Only the artist understands the process, the passion, and the work that it takes to create a true masterpiece. You, my friend, are a masterpiece in the making. Keep painting, keep believing, and most of all never, EVER give up on the masterpiece that is YOU! - Your friend, Gary

So true frito. It's more like the beauty of a flowing river or the change of seasons... a living painting, with movement and ever changing.<br />
<br />
~ wow, the colors man; FAR OUT ~

Great post Drew...keep "painting"...I think the fun is in the painting not necessarily the finished product.:D

Thanks linden. I love the reference (someone else made in a different thread) from FINDING NEMO....<br />
<br />

This proves how powerful the will of a human being is and how powerful the mind of a human being is. Congrats on the change. Keep up the good work!!!!!!!!!!!

You guys ROCK! Thanks for the wonderful comments and encouragement... I feel like a Phoenix... A new life ahead. Love you ALL.


Excellent job, Drew. I really enjoyed this. Thanks. (I learned something too.)

Keep on truckin Girl!<br />
"It's not how many times you get knocked down that counts. It's how many times you get up!"<br />
You've only lost yourself if you quit - and I don't see you quitting!<br />

BRAVO. THAT is where God is.....