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Leslie’s Story

I know what it feels like to give your all into everything you do, yet still come up knowing something is missing. For as long as I can remember. everyone around me saw me as “strong”, organized, super reliable, and as someone who really had their life together.

While much of that is true, the cost of “buckling down”, “sucking it up” and “being strong” for everyone around me came at the price of ignoring my own needs – including ignoring that call on my life.

And after years of pouring myself into others, only to experience continued loss, I reached the point where I felt like I couldn’t help anyone. On the outside I was still the gal who could accomplish anything. Inside, I was falling apart.

Things radically changed for me when a mentor provided a safe place for me to let down my walls and see beyond my brokenness. I was able to connect with the real me in a way I never had before. That’s when I began to rebuild me, and life became better than I ever thought it could be.
I started a new business, gained my very first client, and before long had more business coming my way than I could handle by myself.

But, WAY before any of that, there was this . . .

Shortly after our daughter was born, in 1995, I became septic and nearly died. Six months later, our four-year-old son, Robby, was diagnosed with brain cancer.
At the time we were told that IF the cancer went away, any recurrence would mean certain death.
During our two-year battle, three times the cancer went away. Three times it came back, each time more aggressive than the last. By the third recurrence, the cancer had spread all throughout his brain and covered his spinal cord.
We eventually tried radiation, but a final MRI indicated there was just too much cancer remaining.
The doctors didn’t say, “We’re sending him home to die,” but it was clear that we had exhausted all options.
Now, Robby had a hole in his skin covering the mediport that should have been hidden inside. Doctors advised no water of any kind. No baths, no showers, no pools. Doing so would only speed up the inevitable.
But our church had a baptism service at the beach that weekend and my husband was adamant that we go.

“We have nothing left to lose,” he said.
Well, I’m here to tell you that miracles still happen!
When we left the beach that day, the hole in Robby’s skin was closed, his next MRI was clean! And he is now 28 years old!!

The story doesn’t end there

People think that because you experience a miracle that you go on to have a miracle life forever, but that’s simply not the case.
There’s this misconception that, after a HUGE miracle like ours, you are this “anointed one” and God has lovingly set you aside from harm’s way because you were strong enough, beautiful enough or whatever …and you don’t have any problems.
That is not reality – at all.
While I do have a number of miracle stories I could share, there was also a lot of heartache that came in the years following that miracle.
• 6 weeks before our fourth child was born, my husband’s grandmother was diagnosed with a small spot of cancer on her hip. She passed on just four weeks later.
• At 9 months of age, our sweet baby was diagnosed with diabetes even though we have no family history on either side, and that age is extremely rare for anyone to be given this diagnosis.
• Over the course of the next 30 days
• Robby had an MRI with new spots appearing
• my mother had taken ill from some unknown illness that caused debilitating pain
• and my mother-in-law was found to have a 25-pound ovarian tumor.

Here I was with four kids, 3 who were homeschooled (we started that when we were fighting for Robby’s life) and I was now running 3 households.

Life continued to come at us ruthlessly.

First my mother in law passed away unexpectedly.

Then Harold, a significant father figure in my life died a year after that. Weeks later, I had a devastating miscarriage.

If it wasn’t sickness or death, it was financial. There was always something to conquer.

And when I lost a 15-year-old friend to cancer and his mom (one of my closest friends) stopped talking to me the same day. I was crushed.

But I kept on just sucking it up. I had to be strong, or so I thought. Then one day I reached the end of me.

If you’ve ever raised teenagers, you know some of the tests that come along with that season. I did everything I knew to deal with the challenges that arose during that time.

And in the middle of an intense discussion with someone I trusted to help me, I was asked, “What kind of mother are you?”

I was losing my child to forces I couldn’t control. That was it. I was finished. The years of repeated stress and loss had finally taken their toll. Inside, I was completely broken.

But there was this quiet voice inside that kept calling me to something more. I didn’t know what that meant, I only knew, deep down, that I was not where I was meant to be.

You Are Only Human

Flash forward to that moment with my mentor and I realized; “You don’t have to be superhuman. You’re just human. And that’s okay.”

We think that, “If I can just figure God out, if I can decipher His master plan, THEN everything will be great.”
Yet, Jesus was pretty clear – you will have trials in this life.
And when that happens, you’ll be tempted to armor up and you’ll want to power through and be strong and ignore the messy feelings that make you human.

One thing is certain, life is hard, and being a force of strength, or at least keeping up the appearance of one, is exhausting.

But when I learned to embrace those things that make me different, and to become that person that God was calling me to be, all of that messiness seemingly melted away. And the people I was called to serve, just started showing up all around me!

If you’re ready to become that person you were created to be, I invite you to join me.
I’ll help you see beyond the brokenness and reach that beautiful balance between strength and vulnerability.

My Greatest Achievement

My greatest achievements are at home. Through all of this craziness, with all of life’s ups and downs, I’ve stayed happily married 32 years to my high school sweetheart, Rick. Together, we have 6 amazing children (4 by birth, 2 by marriage to our children), and 3 adorably awesome grandchildren.

Yep, we successfully survived those teenage years! 😉

Professional
If you’ve read this far and still desire some initials behind my name, here are a few of my accomplishments.

Leslies’ Story

I know what it feels like to give your all into everything you do, yet still come up knowing something is missing. For as long as I can remember. everyone around me saw me as “strong”, organized, super reliable, and as someone who really had their life together.
While much of that is true, the cost of “buckling down”, “sucking it up” and “being strong” for everyone around me came at the price of ignoring my own needs – including ignoring that call on my life.
And after years of pouring myself into others, only to experience continued loss, I reached the point where I felt like I couldn’t help anyone. On the outside I was still the gal who could accomplish anything. Inside, I was falling apart.
Things radically changed for me when a mentor provided a safe place for me to let down my walls and see beyond my brokenness. I was able to connect with the real me in a way I never had before. That’s when I began to rebuild me, and life became better than I ever thought it could be.
I started a new business, gained my very first client, and before long had more business coming my way than I could handle by myself.

But, WAY before any of that, there was this . . .

Shortly after our daughter was born, in 1995, I became septic and nearly died. Six months later, our four-year-old son, Robby, was diagnosed with brain cancer.
At the time we were told that IF the cancer went away, any recurrence would mean certain death.
During our two-year battle, three times the cancer went away. Three times it came back, each time more aggressive than the last. By the third recurrence, the cancer had spread all throughout his brain and covered his spinal cord.
We eventually tried radiation, but a final MRI indicated there was just too much cancer remaining.
The doctors didn’t say, “We’re sending him home to die,” but it was clear that we had exhausted all options.
Now, Robby had a hole in his skin covering the mediport that should have been hidden inside. Doctors advised no water of any kind. No baths, no showers, no pools. Doing so would only speed up the inevitable.
But our church had a baptism service at the beach that weekend and my husband was adamant that we go.

“We have nothing left to lose,” he said.
Well, I’m here to tell you that miracles still happen!
When we left the beach that day, the hole in Robby’s skin was closed, his next MRI was clean! And he is now 28 years old!!

The story doesn’t end there

People think that because you experience a miracle that you go on to have a miracle life forever, but that’s simply not the case.
There’s this misconception that, after a HUGE miracle like ours, you are this “anointed one” and God has lovingly set you aside from harm’s way because you were strong enough, beautiful enough or whatever …and you don’t have any problems.
That is not reality – at all.
While I do have a number of miracle stories I could share, there was also a lot of heartache that came in the years following that miracle.
• 6 weeks before our fourth child was born, my husband’s grandmother was diagnosed with a small spot of cancer on her hip. She passed on just four weeks later.
• At 9 months of age, our sweet baby was diagnosed with diabetes even though we have no family history on either side, and that age is extremely rare for anyone to be given this diagnosis.
• Over the course of the next 30 days
• Robby had an MRI with new spots appearing
• my mother had taken ill from some unknown illness that caused debilitating pain
• and my mother-in-law was found to have a 25-pound ovarian tumor.

Here I was with four kids, 3 who were homeschooled (we started that when we were fighting for Robby’s life) and I was now running 3 households.

Life continued to come at us ruthlessly.

First my mother in law passed away unexpectedly.

Then Harold, a significant father figure in my life died a year after that. Weeks later, I had a devastating miscarriage.

If it wasn’t sickness or death, it was financial. There was always something to conquer.

And when I lost a 15-year-old friend to cancer and his mom (one of my closest friends) stopped talking to me the same day. I was crushed.

But I kept on just sucking it up. I had to be strong, or so I thought. Then one day I reached the end of me.

If you’ve ever raised teenagers, you know some of the tests that come along with that season. I did everything I knew to deal with the challenges that arose during that time.

And in the middle of an intense discussion with someone I trusted to help me, I was asked, “What kind of mother are you?”

I was losing my child to forces I couldn’t control. That was it. I was finished. The years of repeated stress and loss had finally taken their toll. Inside, I was completely broken.

But there was this quiet voice inside that kept calling me to something more. I didn’t know what that meant, I only knew, deep down, that I was not where I was meant to be.

You Are Only Human

Flash forward to that moment with my mentor and I realized; “You don’t have to be superhuman. You’re just human. And that’s okay.”

We think that, “If I can just figure God out, if I can decipher His master plan, THEN everything will be great.”
Yet, Jesus was pretty clear – you will have trials in this life.
And when that happens, you’ll be tempted to armor up and you’ll want to power through and be strong and ignore the messy feelings that make you human.

One thing is certain, life is hard, and being a force of strength, or at least keeping up the appearance of one, is exhausting.

But when I learned to embrace those things that make me different, and to become that person that God was calling me to be, all of that messiness seemingly melted away. And the people I was called to serve, just started showing up all around me!

If you’re ready to become that person you were created to be, I invite you to join me.
I’ll help you see beyond the brokenness and reach that beautiful balance between strength and vulnerability.

My Greatest Achievement

My greatest achievements are at home. Through all of this craziness, with all of life’s ups and downs, I’ve stayed happily married 32 years to my high school sweetheart, Rick. Together, we have 6 amazing children (4 by birth, 2 by marriage to our children), and 3 adorably awesome grandchildren.

Yep, we successfully survived those teenage years! 😉

Professional
If you’ve read this far and still desire some initials behind my name, here are a few of my accomplishments.

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