Recovering from tragedy is one of the most difficult phases people go through in life. While we may go to great lengths to avoid loss and turbulence altogether, they’re ultimately inevitable.

No matter how beautifully things may be falling into place, life can take a complete 180-degree-turn when you least expect it. As our lips tremble, our courage drops, and our faith begins to dissipate, clinging onto hope can become the most difficult task on earth. Difficult, but possible.

Here’s a guide that will help you find the strength to heal and start anew.

Understand and Process the Trauma

One of the first steps when starting over is understanding and processing what you just lived through. Did you experience heartbreak? Did you lose someone close to you? Were you betrayed by someone you thought you knew like the back of your hand?

Instead of shoving your emotions under the rug, confront them. As you come to terms with what happened, you’ll start the difficult—albeit necessary—process of healing.

And remember, you can’t heal without undoing the knots of your trauma. As you carefully disentangle the mess, you’ll achieve emotional catharsis and find the strength to go on.

“After the funeral, Meggie lingered alone at the Nordhoff Cemetery. Two wooden crosses marked the family plot. How could she possibly go on?

There are moments of decision in life. Meggie knew instinctively that this was one of them. She lay down on her side on the freshly turned dirt of her mama’s grave. It would be easy to quit. To crawl back into bed. To sleep. Her parents were gone. Her childhood at an end. How could she embrace the pain of going on?”

Patricia Hartmann’s powerful novel, “The Ojai—Pink Moment Promises,” follows the story of Ojai farm girl, Meggie. How does she move forward? More importantly, how does she find the strength to understand and process her trauma? Click here to read the first chapter.

Turn to Your Friends and Family

Healing in solitude isn’t always the best way to turn the page. Dive deep into your personality and the kind of trauma you experienced. Are you ready to navigate the pitfalls yourself? Or do you need support?

If you’ve always mended your wounds yourself, you may be equipped to fight your own battles. However, if you need help, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your friends and family. Prayer is also a key ingredient to finding strength beyond yourself.

Healing is a difficult, complex process that can leave you feeling overwhelmed, frustrated, and confused. Turning to your support system and to God will make things easier and help you start anew without getting lost along the way.

Let Hope Become the Driving Force in Your Life

Holding onto hope isn’t easy, especially if your trauma has left deep scars that are still fresh and painful. In “Secrets of Sandpiper Cove,” Patricia Hartmann tells the story of Rachel, a young woman who has faced unimaginable loss.

As she struggles to make a future for herself and her daughter, Rachel clings onto hope like it’s a necklace permanently clasped around her neck or a tattoo forever inked into her soft, porcelain skin. 

“She ran a hand across the smooth curves of the carved sandpiper. Would running the Sandpiper Cove Inn help her find some unknown treasure hiding in the moist sand of her loss? Rachel hoped so.”

Will Rachel’s hope help her surmount the countless hurdles from her past? And how can you use her strength and courage to find your own? Click here to read the first chapter.

As you follow Meggie and Rachel’s respective journeys, you’ll find the spark of healing igniting in your heart. Let its light course through your body so you can fully recover from your past traumas and start anew.

Looking for more inspiration? Browse through Patricia Hartmann’s collection of gripping, empowering, and moving modern fiction and historical romance novels. Her body of work is also available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble.