My name is Annabel Ruffell and I am the founder of Journey for Earth, a global awareness company committed to inspiring change for humanity, the environment and animals, one choice at a time..
I was led to Kendra’s website by a lovely email she wrote to me thanking me for my website and inspiration. I of course was inspired by Kendra…her story, her writing and her light and inspiration. In her words below:
My name is Kendra and I am a 29 year old stroke survivor who has a new lease on life. You can call me Stroked to Life :).
After surviving a cerebral venous thrombosis at 25, I have found myself drinking in life. (For the complete story you can click here and here) I try to savor each and every experience. I am a stay at home mom to a beautiful little girl as well as an interior designer. I love all things art, interior design (obviously), photography, reading, and writing. I love KU Basketball (how could you not?) and laughing with friends and family.
I want people to know that even when you have the worst of experiences, there is a life after the ickiness and it can be filled with as much beauty as you want it to be.
What Journey are YOU on?
I’m on a multipurpose journey; though I am not entirely sure how to describe the journey that I am on. I want to add inspiration and hope to the world, I want people to know that peace and happiness are obtainable even though you may be going through difficulties. I want to live love and forgiveness. I don’t have all the answers but part of the joy in life is finding them!
2) What has been one of your greatest challenges over the years, either with the work that you do or in another area of your life, and how did you overcome it?
My cerebral venous thrombosis that I had at 25 is one my greatest of the challenges that I have had to face . I haven’t overcome it yet, I’m not sure if I will ever be able to truly overcome it; each day I am still learning how to adjust to the changes it has made in my life. I did not know that something so physical could in turn affect every aspect of my life–emotional, spiritual, and mental. Every day I have to learn how to adapt with the affect that my stroke had in one of those areas, each day I see just how different my life is. One of the challenges of it is that my side effects are not noticeable to other people, I do not have side effects such as paralysis, so often other people forget that I have limitations; I often don’t want to call attention to fact that I cannot do what everyone else is doing but at times it is necessary. I’m learning how speak up and be my own biggest advocate, something that I hope to be able to pass onto my daughter. Though my stroke has been a challenge there are moments when I can honestly say that is also one of the greatest blessings that has taken place in my life. It has forced me to evaluate what I truly believe to be important and what I truly value; what I value is living a full life with the people I love who love me in return. I value making the most of the time that I have because one thing I have learned is that while you cannot control time itself, you control what you do with the time you’ve been given.
One of the blessings of a near death experience is that the world looks completely different than it did before, it fills you with a zest for life that you never want to lose. Before my stroke I was a perfectionist, and in a lot of ways I still am, but now I can see how ludicrous the idea of being perfect is; perfection doesn’t mean happiness. Happiness can only be achieved in a life that has been well lived with time well spent.
3) What is your greatest hope for our planet at this time?
My greatest hope for the planet right now is that we learn how to love each other in spite of our many differences. Love without reservations, without ulterior motives, love with respect. One of the greatest things about our planet is that we are a diverse planet, we have different perspectives and experiences and that’s amazing! I love meeting and learning from people who have different perspectives, it makes me feel alive and exhilarated. It may sound idealistic but I really believe that love is enduring and all encompassing and that is what we should focus on putting out into the world. Just because we live differently and think differently doesn’t mean that we can’t support one another and help each other to continually be our best selves.
What Journey are YOU on?