Several years ago I was introduced to the band City and Colour which consists of one band member, Dallas GreenHis music tends to be mellow and raw and he has a way with words that caught my attention immediately and has had me following his music ever since. Not only are his lyrics fantastic, but he is also Canadian which is just plain awesome in my world. It is difficult to pick a favorite song, but some of his more popular songs include Comin’ Home, Little Hell, What Makes a Man, The Girl, and O’ Sister. While some bands have lost their unique sound as they produced more albums, City and Colour has maintained the down to earth sound that he originally intended to capture.

The song O’Sister caught my attention and I found myself listening to it over and over again. I was pretty unhappy with life at the time and the lyrics just spoke to me in a way that I cannot exactly describe. The song was written about Green’s sister who dealt with severe anxiety and possibly schizophrenia. While the things that I was dealing with weren’t as severe as the problems the lyrics elude to, I still felt like I could relate to it. I was dealing with some pretty serious depression at the time and very few people knew the extent of the depression that I was facing because I chose to hide it from those around me. The lyrics to O’Sister have long since stuck with me and influenced the name of this blog.

Part of the first verse of the song says, “Oh sister, what’s wrong with your mind? You used to be so strong and stable.” These lines stood out to me because I was not myself when I was dealing with depression. I chose to deal with it in ways that I shouldn’t have and over time lost a bit of myself. At first, I was good at hiding it. I would have really bad days, but the worse I felt, the happier I would appear to those around me. I never wanted people to know how badly I was hurting. Eventually, something snapped and I became terrible at hiding my feelings. I was no longer able to come across as, “strong and stable.”

My favorite lines of the song are, “But the blackness in your heart, Won’t last forever. I know it’s tearing you apart, But it’s a storm you can weather.” My blog found a name because of this song. I created a blog many years ago that was titled “A Storm You Can Weather”, but that blog was never shared with anyone. I chose to keep the name because I think that it is still applicable today. Back then, I felt a blackness in my heart. I felt dark, lost, and alone. I felt as if the darkness would never let up, but as the song says, it won’t last forever, and it didn’t. Eventually the dark clouds broke and it became apparent that it was just another storm. Life is full of storms and dark clouds are always looming in the distance, but I have found that with Christ in my life they are always storms that I can weather.

This blog was created to share my story and to attempt to reach out to those who just need to hear that it is going to be okay. The title, “A Storm You Can Weather” is a title intended to hold hope. When the dark clouds hover over head life can seem daunting, but there is always a way through the storm.

As written in my very first blog post:
“So here’s the thing…
No matter how dark the clouds,
How close the lightning,
How loud the thunder,
There is no storm too grand for God to walk you through,
There is no storm too violent for God to shelter you from,
Despite the rolls of thunder or strikes of lightning,
There is no storm you cannot weather with God by your side.”

And while you are at it, give City and Colour a listen…


I am a Social Worker, Scary, I know.

Today (May 9th, 2015), I graduated with my Bachelor’s in Social Work. It hasn’t quite settled in yet and don’t think that it will until I do not return to Shepherd in the fall. It felt a little surreal as I woke up this morning and prepared to walk across the stage in cap and gown. Honestly, I do not know if they pronounced my name correctly nor am I sure if I remembered to shake the president of the university’s hand. I was so focused on making it up the stage and down the othIMG_0415er side without tripping that I do not remember what happened from the time I handed my name pronunciation card to the dean to the time I got my picture taken at the other side of the stage. According to my family, they did indeed pronounce my name correctly, I am still unsure about the whole shaking hands thing.

Three years ago I started my journey at Shepherd University. It has been three years, six regular semesters, one summer semester, one hundred and twenty credits, six hundred and sixty-six internship hours, three hundred volunteer hours, over one hundred pages of papers, and countless exams. I have grown as an individual and learned so much from the three professors that dedicated their time to teaching and nurturing a group of young social work minded individuals. I took classes that I thought were pointless and struggled through some of the most challenging yet inspiring courses. There were days that I wanted to give up, and though I never told anyone, I came close to doing just that.

I never wanted to attend Shepherd University. In fact, when I decided to go there, I had plans to leave after one year. I was devastated when I realized those plans were unrealistic and accepted the fact that I would *have* to stick it out at SU. Now, I am so grateful that I had the privilege of completing the Shepherd University’s Social Work program. I had classmates that stuck together, professors who took time to counsel each and every one of us, and a beautiful little college town to enjoy. I remember meeting with my advisor for the first time during my first semester. I walked in to my advisement appointment with a sheet of paper that had the next three years of my life mapped out. I handed my advisor/professor the paper and said, “I want to graduate in three years, here is how I plan to do it, can I do it?” She responded by telling me that she rarely had a freshman walk in to her office prepared IMG_0183for the next semester let alone the next three years. She concluded by telling me that it wouldn’t be easy, but she didn’t see why I couldn’t do it. I never got to take your typical “15 credit hour” semester and I only got one college summer, but it was worth it.

I will never forget the many hours spent in the classrooms and talking to professors. I had three Social Work professors that each touched my life in their own unique way. When my plans to attend WVU fell through and I didn’t know what to do, I went to my SW professors. The two I spoke with both took an hour each out of their time to talk to me about my situation. Both talked me through the pros and cons and not once did they check their watch or act annoyed by the fact that I was taking up their time. One encouraged me to take my time and enjoy life as a student, the other told me to really consider what was most important to me and make a decision from there. In just two weeks I will begin my journey as a graduate student at CUA.

Three years ago, if you had asked me where I saw myself in three years, I would not have told you here. I would not have told you that I would graduate from Shepherd University. I would not have told you that I would still be in West Virginia. For goodness sakes, I am so thankful to Christ that He directed me down a path He designed despite my protests. He brought me through an amazing Social Work program, kept me close to my family, and allowed me to meet a wonderful guy that I get to call my significant other. Without Christ, I would be nothing and far from living the life I do.


These are the amazing people that I call my family who have been there to support me through everything. I would be lost without them!

Philippians 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Matthew 19:26 “Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

Proverbs 16:9 “The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps.”

Isaiah 58:11 “The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.”




My beautiful (and handsome) siblings that took the time out of their Saturday morning to celebrate with me.


My amazing parents and my two biggest supporters! Thanks mom and dad for everything you have done for me!


The Social Work department had a pinning ceremony to celebrate all of the 2015 Social Work graduates. We each received a pin that read “Shepherd University BSW 2015” and a Wand.11259687_10207180707143019_9067264778644948636_n