Strength In Hope

Alycia Neighbours who helped us to see The Dark Side of Snark, is back this week to talk about HOPE. Her personal story could have been very different without it and she is here to make sure you aren’t afraid to use it!

by Catina Jane Gray


I love my children. I love my husband. I love my coffee. I love a warm bath. I love the smell of coconut.

I hate injustice. I hate distractions. I hate disregard. I hate asparagus. I hate when I run out of coffee creamer.

Love and hate; two passionate words that over the course of our lives we use with flippancy and with the depth of our heart. We use the words so much and with varying degrees of feeling that they weaken over time, losing their meaning somewhat of what our true depth is.

But there is one word that the more we think about it, say it or follow it; it becomes stronger.


It starts with a little twitch in our mind. A moment in which we begin to realize that we want a change. As we follow the twitch with a cognitive movement of self, we start to think of it terms of “hope.” Closely behind we begin to follow the thought movement towards change.

Whether or not anything thing changes, the thought of hope gives us permission to think beyond our circumstance. Hope proves that we value ourselves and want the best.

I hope I get a raise.
I hope he asks me to marry him.
I hope I am cured.
I hope this works.

For a while in the midst of an abusive marriage, I had no hope. I had no value of myself to dare to hope, to dream for change. I wasn’t even strong enough to hope for a better day tomorrow, I just survived long enough to make it until tomorrow. I hid from everyone, even myself. Mainly because I knew someone else or even my heart would ask me to attempt hope and that was a luxury I simply couldn’t afford.

Then one day an unlikely friend revealed hope to me when I didn’t expect it. Caught off guard, that small mention of something better set off an unstoppable chain reaction of hope. I began to face my situation and myself and demand better. I began hoping with wild abandon.

The fire of a hopeful spirit carried me from the violence within the home. It cradled me as I cradled my children. It swept me into a tender embrace through the divorce proceedings and learning to make my own way. It held me upright when I wanted to crumble after his suicide. It sheltered me through everything and cushioned me gently as I spent every bit of my spirit daring to hope.

I whispered the word within my soul during it’s infant stage of growth until I gained the courage and value of myself to begin to demand that hope be my guide with a loud voice. Soon it became contagious and I began to seek out others who had forgotten the power of the word.

Without it we are a stale, fragile beings that are simply existing day to day.

With hope we are empowered, strong and valued.

Dare to hope in your life. Dare to value yourself better than your circumstances.

Never be afraid to hope.


Alycia Neighbours is the author of “Diary of ‘…and frankly'” and volunteer contributing writer to Hope Springs International. She writes from an authentic place of past pain as a domestic abuse survivor, suicide survivor and the hope of a newlywed in a real-life version of The Brady Bunch of 7 children. Whether using humor or inspiration, she writes about the little moments in our lives that can teach us the biggest lessons. Alycia’s writing uses a style of casual conversation over a virtual cup of coffee, inviting her readers to journey through pain and hope while keeping an eye on the silver lining.


Don’t forget to enter the Bliss Habits “Speaking of Hope” charity giveaway now underway!  You could win $250 dollars for your favorite charity!!

3 thoughts on “Strength In Hope

  1. Thankyou for sharing. It is through the sharing of our troubles that we give each other hope. You have done just that for someone or someones who read this candid piece. Keep on keeping on you magnificent being of light and love!

  2. Through such a difficult time emerges such beauty. Thank you for this Alycia, and for being strong enough and filled with enough hope to be here sharing it with us.

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