Eye-Opening Moments Podcast

One Thing Led to Another (and more)

January 02, 2024 Emily Kay Tan Episode 101
One Thing Led to Another (and more)
Eye-Opening Moments Podcast
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Eye-Opening Moments Podcast
One Thing Led to Another (and more)
Jan 02, 2024 Episode 101
Emily Kay Tan

Eye-Opening Moments are real-life stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. In this episode you will hear about One Thing Led to Another  and Comfort Amid Adversity.

Website: https://inspiremereads.com
Books: https://amazon.com/author/emily-kay-tan.2021_

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Comments or questions welcomed:
Twitter @emilykaytan OR https://inspiremereads.com.
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Eye-Opening Moments are real-life stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. In this episode you will hear about One Thing Led to Another  and Comfort Amid Adversity.

Website: https://inspiremereads.com
Books: https://amazon.com/author/emily-kay-tan.2021_

Support the Show.



Comments or questions welcomed:
Twitter @emilykaytan OR https://inspiremereads.com.
Subscriptions appreciated: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1919670/support

Hello and welcome to episode #101 of Eye-Opening Moments where you’ll hear stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. They are moments that can lift your spirits, give you some food for thought, or move you. For the introspective mind that likes to reflect, discover, and find solutions or meaning in a complex life, this is for you. I’m your host Emily Kay Tan. In this episode, you will hear about One Thing Led to Another and Comfort Amid Adversity.

One Thing Led to Another
Tina Turner died. Everyone knew because the death of the queen of rock-n-roll was all over the news. Little did I know that the news would affect me, and one thing led to another. Too often, when a person dies, we pay attention and then take a look at the life they lived. It boggled my mind that I could have anything in common with the megastar. It was nothing I could have imagined, but I did. If I could have something in common with Tina Turner, a superstar, don't be surprised if you do, too.

Tina was born on November 26th, and so was I. It's a small fact, but it connected me to her. Then I learned that her grandmother had raised her for some time, and I was, too. The little girl in me wanted to hold hands with her and play on the swings. Hearing her story of growing up poor in not one of the best situations brought me back to the time I lived with my grandma, who raised me. Her anecdote made me think about my story; one thing led to another.

As I discovered more about Tina, I noticed a few more similarities. She had a physically abusive husband, and I had an emotionally abusive one. My heart sank, and I cried when I found out what happened to her. I sobbed for someone I didn't even know personally. In the next moment, I was in tears as I was amazed at her success despite the horror she endured with her then-husband. Her story of abuse made me think of my own. Like her, I escaped. Seeing the movie about her, where she ran to a hotel to escape her husband, was painful; I cried some more. My story is nowhere near as heartwrenching as hers. I have been poor, but never only thirty-six cents to my name. I couldn't comprehend her pain. It reminds me that somebody always has it worse than me, so I need to stop feeling sorry for myself when I have that moment.

I used to be ashamed of my divorce, but now, with a new perspective, I am proud to have had the courage to fight for my freedom and happiness. Tina's story drudged up old memories that watered my eyes. Now, I felt more sorry for her than for myself. It isn't pity; it is just sad that she endured what she did.

I am not altogether down about her sad story. Though Tina had many challenges, she was a fighter. She refused to give up and accept anything less than the best. Tina fought to pick herself back up again and again. What touched me is that she overcame one adversity after another. Tina's character traits of strength, resilience, courage, and tenacity are most admirable. I could easily see that about her. Others have said the same of me, but I didn't think much of it. Through Tina, I began to appreciate and value myself a bit more.

Watching videos of people interviewing her, I discovered some things about her that resonated with me. She mentioned that after her abusive ex-husband died, she figured out how to forgive. Only a couple of years ago did I come to the same conclusion she did! You let go to stop punishing yourself. You forgive to stop inflicting pain on yourself. Who was right or wrong doesn't matter; your freedom and happiness matter. It took me ten years to forgive my cheating boyfriend. Better late than never; I am glad I learned a lesson like Tina.

It was news to me that Tina practiced Buddhism; I was surprised because it wasn't most common in the USA. After a devastating breakup with my boyfriend, whom I did not forgive for ten years, I began to read many books about Buddhism and went to Bhutan to learn more. I had one more thing in common with Tina.

When you see Tina singing and dancing on stage with boundless energy and excitement, it is hard to imagine that she had so much adversity, but she did. When you know she is the queen of rock-n-roll and that she faced so many challenges while rising to the top, you can't help but admire her and feel inspired by her.

Forever yearning to express my voice, I found that writing and podcasting about my adversities provide comfort and eye-opening moments for me. The result is a meaningful and contented life. I hope the voice that Tina Turner has given us gave her satisfaction and joy despite her adversities.

Upon hearing of Tina's passing and her life story, her stories led to thoughts of parts of my life similar to hers in some way. It was an unexpected discovery and impact. When I shared many of my adversities with a friend, he said I inspired him. It baffled me how anyone could be inspired by my failures, hardships, and challenges. It wasn't until I learned of Tina's story that an aha moment came to me.

Tina inspired me because she fought through her adversities while working tirelessly to become the success she was as a singer. Despite facing enormous challenges and obstacles, she refused defeat and pressed on to be the big megastar. Suddenly, I understood what it means to be inspiring. It is when you can pick yourself off the floor and rise above it all. It gives you hope that you, too, can have better days to come. Tina inspired me; I hope to inspire others with my stories, too.

Comfort from Adversity
Years ago, while in Hong Kong, I quickly stopped by a fortuneteller's stall; I couldn't resist my curiosity. As fast as I stopped by, he was also swift to give me a reading in about fifteen minutes. It was the usual; look at my palm and ask for my birthdate. I was worried I would not get any good news because I felt heavy with many adversities weighing down on me. Soon after I heard what he said, I unexpectedly skipped away with a smile! But in the next moment, I was a bit displeased, too. How can there be joy amid suffering? To my amazement, I could find comfort while consumed in misery.

It wasn't one, two, three, or four disasters; it was too many challenges in life that had my shoulders slouching and my head hanging down. After decades of hardships and a global pandemic that stopped me from traveling and moving abroad, I threw my hands up to talk to the spirits in the sky. I said, "Haven't I overcome many challenges already? Haven't I shown myself able? Why are you still testing me?" It took decades, but I finally broke down to cry and claim that I had a miserable life.

In the next moment, I remembered the words of that fifteen-minute fortuneteller. He said that my life was full of adversities, more than the average. Goodness, I didn't need him to tell me that; I already knew that. However, in the same sentence, he said it was okay because I was blessed with the ability to overcome all of them, so I needn't worry. That last part of his sentence sent me skipping away with joy. Then I paused and said to myself: Wait a minute. He said my life was full of adversities. Was I destined to have such a life? But wait, I stopped in my footsteps again. It is with hardships that I strengthen my creative and problem-solving skills and develop my strength to be the strong woman I am today.

Like laying down on a soft pillow that would send me floating on my dream cloud, I soaked in a comforting feeling that gave me great relief. I didn't need to worry about whether or not I could overcome the next obstacle or challenge; my "destiny" told me I would crush all the roadblocks, so I chose to believe that was my fate.

My logical side of the brain began mulling over all my adversities and if or how I overcame them. I wanted to see if what the fortuneteller said was true.

Mom tossed me out at age five; I learned to care for myself and became independent early on. I needed money to go to college, and I found a way without the help of anyone I knew. I didn't know what I wanted as a career, but I knew I wanted to make a difference in children, and my experiences led me down the path to becoming a teacher. I had to work full-time and attend school full-time to afford graduate school; I made it work. I got a divorce from an emotionally abusive husband and came out sane. I went into business for some years; I failed and went broke. Simultaneously, my boyfriend cheated on me, and it devastated me. I sang and exercised to keep myself sane and moved abroad to have a new beginning. I got trapped in a global pandemic with dwindling funds. Travel bans halted my plan to move overseas again to solve my financial woes. My creative skills and tenacity helped me find the solution. After many years of a successful and satisfying career, I was angry and miserable doing the same job. I searched to do something more fulfilling, and I found my passion for writing and podcasting to express my voice. Yes, these were some of the significant adversities I overcame. As the fortuneteller said, I overcame them all.

Remembering all the challenges brings me no joy, but I find solace in knowing I can overcome them all. Further, though challenges seem to appear at every corner I turn, its opposite has to exist, too.

I got a Bachelor's and Master's degree even though it seemed impossible for financial reasons. I found great satisfaction in my career for over twenty years. I had five marriage proposals. I have great friends who would be with me through thick and thin. I had the adventure of a lifetime in a business opportunity filled with experiences outside my comfort zone. I went skydiving, bungy jumping, ziplining, and hot-air balloon riding, all of which was on my bucket list. I once afforded a brand new house and a house of my own. I never thought I could buy a brand new car, but I did. I never imagined I would travel to eighteen countries, but I did. I never envisioned traveling out of the country up to six times a year, but I did. I was shocked that I moved abroad to live and work; it was a paradise I had never dreamed of when I lost many possessions and income from the economic crisis of 2008 and the global pandemic of 2020. I survived it and came out happier and more secure. All these are my blessings on the other side of adversity.

How can you find comfort in the midst of adversity? Believe and know that you will overcome the challenges. Understand that each has its opposite, so wherever there is a misfortune, fortune is around the corner. It is critical to grasp that possibility exists when we choose to see it or find it. Choose comfort amid adversity. Choose solutions amid impossibility. I now close my eyes to enjoy the wonders of the many opposites that give us an incredible life.

Key Takeaways: Though I am not a famous singer like Tina Turner, I found similarities with her that warm my heart.

Though my life is full of adversities, it is also full of strength of character to overcome them all.

Next week, you will hear two real-life stories called The Movie You Didn’t Want to Seeand It’s not Fair.  If you enjoyed this episode of Eye-Opening Moments, please share it with others, support the show by clicking on the link in the description, or go to www.inspiremereads.com and leave a message. Thank you for listening!

 

Introduction
One Thing Led to Another
Comfort Amid Adversity
Key Takeaways