Celebrate Life, Overcome Adversity

A dreamy day in the pumpkin patch. Rue's brother Isaac is in the red shirt.

The best things in life heal, bring joy, and make sense of the pain.

You can use your own pain, wisdom, experience, and desire to live free. When you do, life is better. The sky is bluer. We find purpose in our pain. It can be depression, loss, PTSD, trauma, a life un-lived, or just plain muddling. Our pain unites us. And when we reach out to others who have been broken, we spread hope.

“Broken” is not a word we need to be afraid of. Brokenness is life, and truth leads to hope. Broken does not mean broke forever. We heal, we help others, and serve as testimonies that life can be better.

Intentional Living allows us to make the most of each moment we are given. We all are going to die. The most important questions, what are you going to do between now and then? Make sure you click to check out my blog for more on living with passion and purpose.

Speaking is one way I try to make a difference while also making sure my life is driven by passion and purpose. I educate on PTSD, depression, suicide and brokenness, I motivate and teach skills for others to live free, I teach workshops that help others overcome adversity and begin that climb up the ladder.

The only skill you need to heal yourself, stay healed, and help others to heal and live free is desire. That is why I created The Ladder UPP. It is a simple tool to help us live free and reach out to others who wish to do the same. The best journeys ultimately provide the fuel to bring people together, even if you begin alone.

Mommy makes strawberries taste better!

All you might need for joy is a strawberry!

We are surrounded by people with a desire to heal and learn to live free. A proper response takes action and making sure our own lives are built on a strong purpose and foundation.

Who are they? (see references at bottom of page)

25% of adults had a mental illness the previous year (1)
Lifetime prevalence of mental illness is 50% (1)
Up to 1 in 11 people are clinically depressed at any given moment (1)
11% of Americans 12 or older take antidepressants (2)
1 in 4 girls, and 1 in 6 boys sexually assaulted before age 18 (3)
1.3 women are forcibly raped each minute (3)
1 in 5 women will be raped in their lifetime (4)
15-20% of veterans from all eras have PTSD in any given year (5)
6.8% of people will have PTSD in their lifetime (10.4% of women, 5% of men) (5)
A suicide every 13 minutes, 40,000 people a year (6)
For every 1 suicide, 12 people harm themselves (6)
70% of people hate their jobs or are completely disengaged (7)
70% of Americans have financial problems (8)

Where are they?

EVERYWHERE
At work
In our homes
In our churches
At the grocery store
Our sons and daughters
Our brothers, sisters, and parents
The person sitting across from you in the coffee shop
The person looking at you in the mirror

What can we do about it?

We need to reach out to one another
We need each other to make the most out of life and live free
We can’t be shy
It starts with ourselves, we need to examine our own life to have the fuel we need to help others. A passion to live is all you need to make a difference in someone else’s life.

Silouan conducting a workshop at the US Army's Soldiers Systems Center, the Army's premier research center.

Silouan conducting a workshop at the US Army’s Soldiers Systems Center, the Army’s premier research center.

What am I doing:

Speaking (click for more inf0) – I try to spread this message of community and hope everywhere I speak
The Ladder UPP (click for more info) – a tool I created based on my own recovery from brokenness to strengthen our own lives so that we can then use our wisdom and experience to interact, engage, and begin a healing conversation with others. You can start alone, but it is a great tool to use in small groups of any kind – churches, families, colleges, recovery, etc.
Who Am I? (click for more info) – my own story on learning how to live after the crash. Literally! A tragic jet crash made me examine my entire life in order to find a reason to live and escape the demons of severe posttraumatic stress disorder. It was a harrowing, psychedelic, thrilling, unbelievable ride, but I made it out to find love, peace, and joy. Perfect if you need a jolt of hope.

This is love

We need each other to make life a magical adventure!

I NEED YOUR HELP!

We can only take on the immense brokenness surrounding us together. We must have faith that we will be given the strength and tools to make a difference in the lives of those we love, our neighbors, and most importantly, the “least of these” who think they are alone. It will take us all, but we can make a difference. I see lives saved and changed everyday by ordinary people like you and me. It just takes that desire to find our purpose and serve another. Our pain should unite us, and remind us how much we need each other. Your sorrow will lead to purpose if you allow your heart to be open to God’s purpose for your life. With love and grace in your heart, all your wisdom, experience, and pain will be a powerful tool that helps others out of the darkness. Click here to learn more on how to MAKE A DIFFERENCE!

Statistical References:

1: From a 2004 study by the US Center of Disease Prevention (CDC) http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2011/09/03/cdc-statistics-mental-illness-in-the-us/

2: From WebMD, http://www.webmd.com/depression/news/20111019/use-of-antidepressants-on-the-rise-in-the-us

3: From the National Center on Domestic Violence, http://www.ncdsv.org/images/sexualassaultstatistics.pdf

4: From the NYTimes, http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/health/nearly-1-in-5-women-in-us-survey-report-sexual-assault.html?_r=0

5: From National Center on PTSD, http://www.ptsd.va.gov/professional/PTSD-overview/epidemiological-facts-ptsd.asp

6: From the American Foundation of Suicide Prevention, https://www.afsp.org/understanding-suicide/facts-and-figures

7: According to 2013 Gallup Poll, http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/70-u-s-workers-hate-job-poll-article-1.1381297

8: 2010 Pew Survey, http://crooksandliars.com/susie-madrak/pew-survey-70-americans-have-financia