Tag Archive | Perseverance

Life Ain’t Always Beautiful


“Life ain’t always beautiful
Sometimes it’s just plain hard
Life can knock you down, it can break your heart
Life ain’t always beautiful
You think you’re on your way
And it’s just a dead end road at the end of the day
But the struggles make you stronger
And the changes make you wise
And happiness has its own way of takin its sweet time”

I love this beautiful Country song, written by Cyndi Goodman and Tommy Lee James and sung by Gary Allan. 

 It’s so inspiring and touching. And especially knowing one of his real life experiences of deep pain that may have influenced his choice to sing this song and with so much passion. 
The song is about how life can be hard and sad and not all good but it’s still a beautiful journey overall. 

“happiness has its own way of takin’ its sweet time”

Just because we aren’t happy right now or sometimes doesn’t mean we are destined to be unhappy forever. We can always become happy at any point as long as we are alive. 

Gary Allan is a man who experienced true tragedy. He lost his beautiful wife to suicide in 2004. What an unimaginable loss for him and their kids and other family and friends. My heart goes out to them. Imagine the pain and horror they must live with each day. 

His wife, Angela, suffered with severe headaches and depression for years and took her own life one night while she was at home with the children. Poor baby. It’s so devastating that she suffered how she did and couldn’t see the light through her darkness. I wish I could give her a hug. 

We can want to die one second but just a second later change our mind. Imagine how many suicide victims probably would have changed their minds if only they held on just a second longer. Imagine how many pulled the trigger just a second too soon. The depression, the headaches, the suicidal inclination, for many of us aren’t temporary. They are chronic or episodic and they come and go. Come and go. Appear then disappear. But even though they always come back, and even if they stay a while, they always go again or can if we hold on. It does not always feel as if it will or can end or that we can live with it. But the pain can end and/or we can learn to cope better. And we can still find beauty in pain, both physical & emotional. 

“No, life ain’t always beautiful
Tears will fall sometimes
Life ain’t always beautiful
But it’s a beautiful ride”

This song is full of so much strength and determination. So much hope. Instead of giving up and becoming bitter, he takes his pain and puts it into his singing to share beautiful messages with the world.

We can all take our pain, no matter how serious or minor, and turn it into good whether it’s through singing, writing, sharing our experiences or positive message any way we can. Even if it doesn’t reach as many as a famous person’s does, it can still reach at least one. And that is good enough. ❤

This song here can apply to any pain or problems we may have. 

Even through his agony and loss he can see beauty in this life. It's ok that life isn't always beautiful. We can seize all the beautiful moments and acknowledge them, honor them, cherish them instead of getting sucked into the bad and overlooking all the goodness.

Just because pain and tragedy and nonsense exist in life doesn't mean beauty and goodness is outweighed or has to take the back burner. Why let the bad side have all or most of the attention and energy? We have a choice where to place our attention. For some people, it may take a lot of practice to generally see the good. But it's always possible. 

I feel a pull in my chest and deep beauty well up in it when I listen to this song or read the lyrics.

I just love his gentle, kind of sad, but hopeful voice. It’s so beautiful.

"No, life ain't always beautiful
But I know I'll be fine
Hey, life ain't always beautiful
But it's a beautiful ride
What a beautiful ride"

Life Ain't Always Beautiful – Gary Allan 🙂



Much love & light to you. ❤

Xoxo Kim ❤

In Love With Nowhere <3


I read a fiction book called “In Love With Nowhere.” I loved the name as soon as I read it. I automatically interpreted as something positive like we can be in love with “nowhere” like either being physically “in the middle of nowhere” or loving each stage of life even if it seems to be going nowhere.

The book is about a man who is 30 something years old and struggling with severe substance addiction. He is a popular writer of horror fiction books and is well loved by many fans, but his addiction gets the best of him and his career, his marriage, and his whole life are suffering. 

So his agent sets up a place in the woods, a cozy cabin, for him to stay alone for a while to get better. He’ll have no contact with the outside world, other than walks through the woods and the kritters there,  and no access to drugs except smaller and smaller doses of Valium until he’s off it completely. He has to write a blog post each day to let the world know how he is doing and what he’s up to but he has no contact with readers.

Shortly after he gets to the cabin, very strange things begin happening. He’s not sure what’s real and what are hallucinations and delusions. He suffers immensely, both physically and emotionally. He experiences depression and serious physical opiate withdrawal symptoms.  He is plagued with nightmares and terrible visions. 

It’s a psychological thriller and a horror fiction book but runs deeper than just thriller and mystery. There are little life lessons and reminders throughout the book.

Also it helps deepen our empathy for those struggling with addiction. Some scenes are gutwrenching. The author really goes into detail about the physical and emotional torment that people with addiction experience. 

The book is also full of hope and inspiration.

There are little reminders to cherish the beauty all around us. To be mindful of nature and the people we see everywhere we go.

It also reminds us to take comfort in the simple pleasures, when we are sick and in pain, hot tea, a hot shower, a comfortable bed, a cool breeze, just focus on each little thing and allow it to distract us so we don’t have to focus too much on the pain or sickness we are experiencing. It’s ok to find sweet little escapes to help us cope and bring some sense of consolation no matter how small.

Also it reminds us to let go of our painful past, not to be haunted by mistakes we have made and horrific things that happened to us. Acknowledge that they happened, never repress them, but just let them go. They can’t be changed and letting them imprison us does no good to anyone. 

The book also conveys the message that as long as we’re alive, there’s always hope no matter how terrible our life seems now.

Also, it reminds us to smile big like a “simpleton!” lol! A couple occasions the man smiles a big goofy grin like a “simpleton,” The author calls it! My grandmom often called me a simpleton when I was little and I still think it’s funny! There’s nothing more beautiful than those moments where we are so filled with joy, we can just laugh and be silly without a care in the world no matter what’s going on! I have those occasions sometimes no matter how depressed or how much physical pain I’m in. We’re never too old or too bad off (as long as we’re alive) to be simple and silly and full of child-like wonder! 😀

Some scenes are beautiful and serene, some bizarre, and some frightening and very distressing but all together it’s a beautiful story and even though I don’t and never have had a drug problem, I can relate to so many of this man’s underlying experiences.

This isn’t really a spoiler but a line out of the book in case you don’t want to read it and read the book first.

Just when the man is about to just give up, someone has this to say to him:

“You have so much potential, you can give the world so much, you will give the world so much.” 

“Like I said, the world needs you and eventually it will find a use for you. But not as a repressed drug addict.”

I find this message to be beautiful and inspiring. We are more than just our struggles and pain and we all have potential and so much to give.

We are more than a drug addict or a depressive or schizophrenic, or someone with an eating disorder or low self-esteem or someone drowning in grief. We are more than an asthmatic or cancer patient or an anxious person or whatever physical or emotional ailment or disease we have been afflicted with. So much more. Even when it feels that all we are is someone with pain or a disorder. 

We are not a disorder or a condition or an addiction. I am not my pain.
You are not your anxiety or painful experiences or emotions or words that have hurt you. You aren’t your bad habits or mistakes or flaws or shortcomings.

We have a whole personality and love and skills and gifts beneath those labels and agonizing experiences. Look, feel, and they are there. Here. 

We have so much potential.

So this book is a fun thriller and mystery but it’s also much more.  It’s grounded in hope and healing.

And I just feel the desire to share!


Even if you don’t read the book, maybe you can find these little reminders helpful or inspiring anyway!

Lots & lots of love to you! 😀

Xoxo Kim 

I Can Stand Up Once Again <3


Years ago, in a therapy session, I made this inspirational project with my therapist, Hannah.   This was back when my depression wasn’t as healed yet and I was struggling many days. Hannah was a student, doing work at a mental health clinic, and when she graduated she had to leave and isn’t my therapist anymore.

But I am still inspired and touched by all that I have learned when I did therapy work with her.

She helped me a lot and sessions with her were healing & fun. She was really good at listening to me and also she provided me with great, helpful techniques, such as the above activity, cutting out inspirational pictures, words, and stuff out of magazines for an uplifting image and reminder to look at so we can be inspired whenever we see it.

Hannah would often ask me about my favorite songs, why I love them, how they help me, and what they teach me. She explained how it’s a great technique to focus on the messages & Beauty of positive songs and let them inspire & help heal me.

We used to listen to my favorite songs and meditate during sessions. And she asked me to chose a song I love, one that inspires me so we can do a fun, healing activity together during our session. I chose Mariah Carey’s “Through the Rain” which is the song that helped give me the courage and motivation I needed in 2008 to first seek professional treatment for Depression. 

“When you get caught in the rain with no where to run
When you’re distraught and in pain without anyone 
When you keep crying out to be saved 
But nobody comes and you feel so far away 
That you just can’t find your way home 
You can get there alone 
It’s okay, what you say is 
I can make it through the rain 
I can stand up once again on my own 
And I know that I’m strong enough to mend
And every time I feel afraid I hold tighter to my faith
And I live one more day and I make it through the rain” ~ Mariah Carey

Hannah and me chose the line “I can stand up once again” in the song and we made this together and she let me keep it to always remind myself that no matter what happens to me, how low I sink into despair, how often I am knocked down, I can stand up once again.

“And if you keep falling down don’t you dare give in
You will arise safe and sound, so keep pressing on steadfastly
And you’ll find what you need to prevail 
What you say is 
I can make it through the rain 
I can stand up once again on my own 
And I know that I’m strong enough to mend
And every time I feel afraid I hold tighter to my faith 
And I live one more day and I make it through the rain 
And when the rain blows, as shadows grow close don’t be afraid 
There’s nothing you can’t face 
And should they tell you you’ll never pull through 
Don’t hesitate, stand tall and say 
I can make it through the rain 
I can stand up once again on my own 
And I know that I’m strong enough to mend
And every time I feel afraid I hold tighter to my faith 
And I live one more day and I make it through the rain”

I haven’t seen this craft we made in a while and last year my family and me moved to a new house and a lot of stuff somehow disappeared. We don’t know what happened to it. Through the years I would think of this and wish I still had it but I thought it was long gone. Then today I was looking for an old Philosophy book in some old stuff I have packed away and the memory of this popped into my head out of nowhere and I wished more than ever that I had it. I have so much stuffe packed in my closet and a mirror broke and little pieces are all throughout my stuff. I was in pj shorts and a shirt and just reached my hand into some random junk and pulled something out and it happened to be this!!!

I couldn’t believe it! I never even knew it made it to the new house! I don’t remember packing it. But it’s here!! It’s strange that I pulled it out exactly when I remembered it wishing I had it!

Talk about sweet & strange coincidences!  

It’s kind of tattered and worn out but it’s still amazing! It just needed some extra glue. It’s tattered, Worn, and broken but still standing!

I love the message of this song. It shows that no matter what happens, even if there’s no one with us currently to help us, we can still manage to stand strong.

“I can make it through the rain and stand up once again 
And I live one more day 
And I can make it through the rain 
(Oh, yes, you can) 
You’re gonna make it through the rain” 

Here’s the desktop link for the song video:


Mobile link:


Xoxo Kim


My new necklace!

My new necklace!

“The wound is the place where the light enters you.” ~ Rumi

I got this necklace at an Etsy shop like this one: https://www.etsy.com/listing/123470947/the-wound-is-the-place-where-the-light?

& this: https://www.etsy.com/search/handmade/jewelry?includes%5B0%5D=tags&q=rumi+quote

For $15.00

Loud & Proud No Matter What


I believe we should be proud of all our accomplishments, big and small, alike.   
Accomplishments such as kicking a bad habit, healing or recovering an addiction, quitting old detrimental ways…are still great accomplishments even though some people think they are not because they believe those things shouldn’t have been started in the first place.

I subscribed to this page:


And the man who the page belongs to said he is grateful he no longer cheats on women who he is in a relationship with. He wrote that it may seem like a bizarre thing to be thankful for but it was a very destructive part of his life at one point and he finally stopped.  Now his life is better.

I don’t see that as a bizarre thing to be proud of or grateful for. It takes strength and courage to admit to a problem or being wrong then working to change it and also to share with others. 

Everyone makes mistakes.  As I have said, no one is perfect in everyone’s eyes. No matter who you are or how amazing you are, someone out there somewhere,  thinks or would think, if you met the person and the person knows about it, that something you do, say, think, or feel or something you previously did, thought, felt or said is/was wrong. Someone will see flaws in you.

It seems as if we often tend to negatively judge people based on the seriousness of the consequences of their actions instead of the morality of the actual action, I guess you can say.  

For example, people often severely criticize people who take drugs and get addicted. The fact that someone takes recreational drugs and gets addicted may have serious, devastating consequences but it says nothing about the character of the person or the person’s general morals.  Some people never take drugs but are just very unkind people who want to drag others down and go out of their way to hurt people merely for the thrill.   And many people who do take illicit drugs or have previously taken them are great people with beautiful personalities who would never go all out to hurt people just for the thrill.

A couple months ago someone told a lie involving me at work.  I forgive the person and believe it was a mistake and not typical of her. Not a mistake as if she wasn’t aware of what she was doing, she knew, and she had malicious intentions, although I have no idea why because we always had a good relationship with each other.  But I view this as a mistake, something she should not have done but she did.  This could have cost me my job.

But I don’t view this as something that defines her personality or character.   It was a mistake, a wrongdoing, a negative act but I choose to look at her as the whole person she is and not as a horrible person based on one vicious act.

People have advised me to feel bitter towards her, to seek revenge, to see her as a horrible individual.  But I choose to move forward with an open heart, forgive her, and “forget.”

She did not admit she was wrong and she lies to the bitter end but I don’t believe her lying now has to do with being malicious towards me any longer.  I think it now has to do with her not wanting to admit she was wrong, feeling as if that’s a weakness on her part.  She has to lie to back up the main lie so as not to confess that she was initially wrong.  So even if she’s sorry, she won’t say it because that would be admitting she was wrong.

However, she did express guilt in other ways and seemed to be trying to make up for it by being extra kind and helpful.  That, in my opinion, is better than an empty “I’m sorry” anyway.

For months I have been angrier than I have ever been, some moments, to the point of fury and it was seeping into every aspect of my life, not just work. I would forgive then go back to holding a grudge off and on but I finally let go, for myself and for her. I don’t want to be angry. She doesn’t want me to be angry.  And it’s done now.

So, my message here is that mistakes you have made and will make, usually say nothing about who you are as a whole person and even if you aren’t as great as you can be, there’s always the possibility for change. You may have to work hard.  It may be awkward and feel uncomfortable now and then but it’s worth it.

And when you accomplish something great like realizing you were wrong and you change your ways or work on yourself for the better that is something to be proud of yourself for no matter what others say.

I have difficulty deleting apps, songs, pictures, and other files off my phone, even ones I never, ever use or even care about.   I always have this fear like “What if I change my mind and delete it and can’t get it back again?!” or “What if later I would come to really want this stuff on my phone and I forget all about it and never know to put it back on?!”.   Lol things like that. So because of this, I can’t put on new stuff or take new pics.

But two nights ago, yesterday,  and today I overcame my limiting fears and decided to go on a deleting spree, deleting everything I don’t use.  Some things I wrote down just in case I may want it again. 

I let my reasoning prevail over emotion. Now is what matters and now I really need more space on my phone.  And I probably will never want those apps and the truth is I can install most of them again if I want later.

This may seem like a trivial thing to be proud of but I must say, I’m proud! Lol. For me, that’s an accomplishment. 

Also, I’m a slob. It’s true. I leave empty soda bottles and candy wrappers around my house and my mom gets so mad. That’s not something I should do ever. But I do.  So when I actually avoid doing that on my own without being told, I feel a sense of accomplishment.   

I hope you will go easy on yourself.   Forgive. Learn.  Move forward. Be honest & open with yourself.

Lol My message here now is that you should be proud and thankful for all of your accomplishments no matter how trivial or important they seem to you or to others. Every little thing you do that contributes in some way, big or small, to a better you, a better world, a better environment, a better relationship, or a better anything is worth being proud of and grateful for.  Even the simplest things.

And this will get you in the habit of seeing the good in you and acknowledging and celebrating your positive aspects and successes. I believe this can lead to a happier life.

What are you holding onto that you should be letting go of?
What should you forgive yourself for?
What would happen inside you if you admit that you were wrong? Admit to yourself?   To others?
Why are you holding on to self resentment?
How about you make the decision to let go now?

Xoxo Kim


You Can Bend but Never Break Me </3 <3


Recently I have been thinking about how “unfair” and “unjust” things are and seem.   People and things in this world can really drag us down and if we let them, even keep us down. There ‘s no doubt about it, people and things outside of ourselves affect us in negative (as well as positive) ways. In ways that may seem out of our control. But my truth is that people can have control over the extent in which they allow people and things, circumstances to “get to them.”

I don’t always have control over what anyone other than myself says or does or feels. I can’t help if people lash out at me, sling insults at me, physically assault me, verbally abuse me, or try hard to bring me down. I also do not and will not always have control over my circumstances or situations.  I can’t always help getting stuck in traffic, things breaking, things not going my way.  And the truth is since I am a living mortal with human emotions and not a robot, a brick wall, dead, brain dead, or whatever else these negative people and situations and things WILL negatively affect me in ways. They will. And that is part of being a living human. A feeling human. I may not have complete control over how things affect me but I DO have control over the degree in which they affect me.

Maybe not right away. But I can practice and learn to not be buffeted by things outside of myself. 
I can do this by acknowledging and accepting the fact that life is good and bad and to remind myself that when people do things wrong to intentionally impact me negatively it says something about them, not me.  
I can look at all the greatness I am surrounded with and filled with and learn not to dwell constantly on the pain and negative things.
I can honor myself. Do and Be what brings me joy. And know that if people do not like me or appreciate me, it’s their loss, their problem.

One day recently I read a story, a true and devastating story, written by a grieving mother who lost her 22 year old son to homicide many years ago. He was a college boy, shot dead by a much older “friend ” over a trivial argument. The mother’s strength and passion and determination amazed me then when I first read that story and amazes me now.  
She chose to live. To keep going. A criminal, a murderer changed her life. And the lives of everyone who knew and loves him. It changed this mother ‘s life for the worse. He took away her only son and left her with just memories, grief, seemingly unbearable pain, and so much confusion and shock . He shattered her life. But she made the choice to put her life back together, though it will never be the same. A vicious, malicious criminal ended her loving, caring son ‘s life but she sure as hell wasn’t going to let that same malicious man end hers in anyway. She is now an advocate for homicide victims and their families and friends.   She works with criminals and murderers in positive ways to try to get them to understand to some degree the devastation that their horrific actions have on everyone around them.
She is a survivor.

Some years ago, a man held a gun to my chest at the store where I work. It’s window service. I was working alone late at night with no one else around.  He came up to the window and told me he had a gun and that I better give him all the store money or he would kill me. He actually said those words to me. “I’ll kill you.” I refused to give him the money and he pulled the gun out and held it to my chest and said “I’m serious, I will kill you.”. 

I still refused. (yeah people told me later how very stupid I was)

Then he told me I better give it or he’ll kill me and take the money then kill the people in the bar across the street which my boss also owns. He said if I give him the money we all live. I never want anyone else’s lives in danger so I let him have it.

The man was never caught. There was no camera to catch his image. I couldn’t identify him in any pictures.   None were of him.

I wasn’t hurt. And I wasn’t touched physically.   

My dad says every now and then how one of his biggest fears is someone coming to the window again while I’m working and actually carrying through with a vicious plan or threat of some sort and either ending or “ruining” my life. He’s afraid I’ll live but be seriously attacked or injured in some way.

But I made a choice. No one will ever ruin my life unless that person ends it. But as long as I’m living No one other than me can destroy me or ruin me because I said so and I will never give anyone that power.   I may not always be able to prevent or avoid an attack, physical or verbal. But I won’t let it destroy me. No one deserves that kind of power over me.

Something or someone can hurt me. Scare me. Paralyze me or whatever but NO ONE will destroy or ruin me. I will be negatively affected by negative people and things.

And I wouldn’t have it any other way. I want to be fully alive.   It is normal. Natural. Healthy.   To be negatively affected by the world around us. To be sad. Disappointed.   Grief stricken. Angry. Scared…..jealous….suspicious, all in healthy dosages.

But then we get back up and move forward. And keep going. And keep living.   And still create happiness & joy.

Like Helen Reddy sings, “You can Bend but Never Break me”

What I’m saying right now must be said gently or I risk sounding cruel. It is in no way intended to tell “victims” or survivors of anything to “get over it” or that they’re overreacting or not handling things right. Everyone reacts in different ways and handles things differently. I want survivors of anything, big and small things, alike to take back the power and never let someone or something else have that power.

I don’t want a criminal or a bully or a situation or illness or anything to have power over a person. I want the person to empower herself (himself). It’s not always easy.   It takes learning and practice and maybe some extra help.
But we can learn not to be destroyed by someone or something else outside of ourselves. We don’t have to feel numb or deny the impact or the scars. We can admit the horror we have endured and how it affected us and then muster up all the strength we have and move forward with an open heart. 

It’s not your fault that people do bad things to you. There’s no justification for abuse or assault or mistreatment of any kind.  And it’s not your fault if you have a sickness of any kind or a disability.   And it’s not your fault if you react negatively to the negativity or mistreatment. It’s just your natural reaction. You can take back your power and own yourself.

I will rise above the victim mentality. Instead I will acknowledge and honor my ability to make choices, my ability to choose happiness and joy even through the trauma and sorrow and grief and negativity.

I refuse to be a victim.

Xoxo Kim

“You can bend but never break me
‘Cause it only serves to make me
More determined to achieve my final goal
And I come back even stronger
Not a novice any longer
‘Cause you’ve deepened the conviction in my soul”. ~ Helen Reddy (I Am Woman)


The lovely Moon, a light in the darkness.