“I call this my new normal”


Dotty Lou_2573

Dotty Lou Farias sits on the mostly demolished deck that was in front of her home destroyed by hurricane Ivan.

I first met Dotty Lou Farias during the early days of the BP oil spill in the gulf of Mexico. She was outside the Gulf Shores, Al. City Hall building confronting several BP emissaries who had been sent to appease the local residents. She is a real estate agent whose company and all of it’s employees rely on the local economy. That economy was in desperate trouble due to the oil spewing out of the earth under the gulf waters. She was not happy and was giving the BP guys all they could handle.

Dotty Lou’s recent years have difficult by anyones’ experience. She explains. “I had a new normal when our son was murdered. I got a new normal now that my husband died of brain cancer. I had a new normal when we lost the home we raised our kids in to hurricane Ivan three months after our daughter was killed in a car crash. It really knocked me to my knees. I was done.” As Dotty Lou explains all this, I realize that I was hear to talk to her about the oil spill that has crippled her business!

She is the classic example of what I had been looking for; someone with no good reason to be hopeful. But I was surprised to hear her explain “Nobody’s trouble is more important than anybody elses’. People come up to me and say, I just don’t know how you are doing this. I don’t know how you are living. I tell them there are 200 million people out there that have it worse than me. I got a pretty house now. I got a car and I have food. Yeah death is a part of life and it sucks, and it hurts, and it tears away pieces of your soul. The only thing you can be guaranteed in life is that everyone is gonna die. Somehow you just have to find a way to live with it. You have to put one foot in front of the other and have Faith.”

The subject of Faith inevitably comes up in most of my talks with people about Hope. Dotty Lou found a Webster dictionary and read the definition of Faith: “A complete acceptance of a truth which cannot be demonstrated or proved by any process of logical thought.”

Hope: A wish or desire accompanied by confident expectation of its fulfillment.

Dotty Lou’s view of Hope and Faith is the most interesting to date. She feels that I should be talking about Faith and not Hope because she thinks Hope is just wishful thinking. But then she says “One of the things about my healing is that I work on filling my cup back up with faith so that I can Hope. Because you can’t Hope if you don’t have Faith.”

I ask if she has faith that BP will clean up the spill? She says no, but I Hope so.

I sense she is going to be OK because she has faith in Hope. Thank you Dotty lou!




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