For the last two days, we’ve shared the story of Tawnya Padilla’s personal journey. We started at the beginning of the journey and watched a new life emerge in part one. We were inspired by her strength and commitment in part two.
Today, we conclude with this three part series with the path going forward and what life is like today.
Today and Tomorrow
While Padilla has lots of things going on and going forward, she is focused on the here and now. She speaks openly and honestly about what life is like today.
And what about that life?
Right now is a time of transition in Padilla’s family and for Padilla, personally, in her role as a mother. Padilla’s children are heading out on their own into the world as adults. While she loves them deeply and is so proud of them, the transition to “empty nester” hasn’t been an easy one.
And while she loves her business ventures and continues to nurture them and watch them grow, she finds herself at a crossroads.
Ah, but for Padilla, she’s getting by with a little help from her friends.
Here’s Padilla in her own words.
“Life is hard for me,” shares Padilla. “I live one day at a time.”
Padilla continues, “What does the future hold for me? I don’t know. All I ask is for good health.”
And speaking of health, Padilla has Tourette’s syndrome, a result of her brain injury. She works hard each day to acknowledge it and work on it. She makes it a goal every day to make it through the day with the least amount of tics and fits.
It isn’t easy.
However, her overall goal of living the BEST life possible stays with Padilla, no matter what.
“I want a life that is meaningful,” she explains. “It hurts to lose a career, dream, and life and make a new one.”
Padilla goes on, “…raising kids as a mom with a TBI is very challenging. I have had to mourn over a loss each time my kid turns 18. I celebrate their life, but, at the same time, I ‘feel’ like I am losing my best friend. Even though I am not, it is morphing into a new relationship with my kids as adults. They pull away; they aren’t as available to be a caregiver as they are living their lives as young adults.
I support that (though) and find other ways to get my needed support. This is why I have been going to Our BEST Space more and more. I am supported here. I am able to fill the void. I am able to have a ‘caregiver’ in a sense as having a BESTie, ‘friend.’ It helps me to transition to an empty nester.”
Our BEST Space has even more meaning for Padilla. It makes a difference, just like she does.
“Our BEST Space allows me to keep growing, make new friends and make a new support system. I have struggled with many moods the past year or two. When I go to the BEST Space my mood is lifted. Just as it is when I go to the support groups.
This is my family. They are my best friends. I can be myself with them.”