Inspiring Lives Magazine Spring 2017: Issue 4 - Page 9

L ife is a challenge for us all. No one gets through unscathed. But some individuals seem to endure more than their fair share of pain, yet rise to levels of greatness be- yond anyone’s wildest imaginations. How do they do it? How do they keep going when they have every justification to give up? Sometimes, life’s injustices also create life’s greatest warriors, and Nancy Oakley—owner and CEO of Nancy O Magazine—is one of them. Born in Thailand, the “Thai Princess” has survived rape, moving to a new country, abuse, the loss of her children, the murder of her sister, and three bouts of can- cer to become the extraordinary person she always knew she would be. Her faith in a higher power has kept her going and keeps her believing her mission on this Earth won’t be complete anytime soon. “I tell everybody not to give up, to keep pushing,” Oak- ley says. “Keep doing what you are doing. I come home and cry, too. I just don’t let people see. Don’t give up.” Not giving up is an understatement when it comes to Oakley. She grew up poor in Thailand, but despite her circumstances, she knew she was going to be someone remarkable someday. “I appealed to the sky that I was going to be successful one day, and I never gave up. I knew it would happen, and it did.” It almost didn’t happen, though. A series of near-death experiences plagued Oakley as young as age 10. While in the jungle with her mother hunting for mushrooms, she was bitten by a mosquito. Her mother tried to get her medical attention, but sadly, hospitals in Thailand only treat those who can afford to pay, and Nancy’s mother could not. Nancy’s serious condition caused her mother to think she had passed away, but then, a kind stranger helped her get the care she needed. “I woke up four months later in the hospital. I learned to walk and talk again. I knew at that time that a higher power kept me on this Earth.” Unfortunately, just a few years after this incident, she was raped and left for dead in the street. After she healed she said, “I wasn’t the same. I knew God had a plan for me.” That plan included coming to America. A 15-year-old Oakley married and headed for the United States. Life was anything but easy. Her husband was abusive. When she finally was able to leave him, he did the unthink- able, kidnapping their small children, ages two and six months. It would be years before Oakley would ever see them again. She was alone and homeless. Even through that despair, she chose to move forward, never letting on how dire her situation truly was. “I went to church and learned English as a second lan- guage. I worked several jobs and went to school. I earned money by helping walk dogs. I spent money on nice clothes so people didn’t know I was homeless. I slept at the beach and kept money in lockers until I got an apart- ment. I focused on what I wanted to do. It was about me and what I wanted.” It seems that nothing could stop her. “Either you’re going to feel sorry for yourself or you’re going to make a difference.” She did make that difference. After school, she went to work ȁѡȁɍѡ́Ёѕ)ѡиUչѕ䰁ͼѡ́͡ݥѠѠ%(=͕݅́ݥѠѕɥȸM݅)͕ЁѼх]͡ѽMхєȁɕѵиQ)́݅́Ё=ݥѡɕ݅Ѽչ̰)ѡѽȁɝȁѼхЁͽհ)̸ͥ ЁѡЁ݅ͻeЁѡ+qQѽȁͅ$݅́ѼѼݥѼ)ٔȁ䁍ɕ$ͅa9'eЁ她dѕȁ)Ёɽ$ЁɅ啐Ѽͅa)Ёٔѡ́ٔɔt$)ٕȁ䁉丁QЁɹѡѽȁٔ)ͅa]ЁԁЁd)!хѕ她!ͅa$Ёݥѹ͕Ʌ$)ЁȁԻdQѼѕ٥)=䰁ͥ͡ɕѡЁѼȁЁɕ)!ȁЁɕ݅́ͼɸЁɅQݡ)ȁͥѕȁ݅́ɑɕ䁡ȁ͉͡ѡ)Յɑȁ܁ѡ䁅Ʌ͕)ѡ́ѥ݅́͡ѕ٥ݕ䁹ѡȁѡ=Ʌ)]ɕ䰁ݡɕȁߊéѽ䁽ȁ͡)ظ]ɕ䁕Ʌ=ѼхЁȁݸ)饹ȁЁՉѥ9<5饹)݅́ɸMѡ=䁡́Չ͡)ɕ͕ٕɅɔ饹́́ѡɽՐԴ)ѡȁ͕ٕɅ̸Qɕѡ͔̰QEՕЁ)Mɕ䰁 QQQMѥɔȴ)ɕѱ䁉Ѽ٥̸Ḿ䁽ѡ͔)ɕɕ́Ёѡ͡͡ͼݹ́Ʌѕ́)MѽQ̸)=䁅ͼ́=͍ȁѼȁɕиḾѡɔ)ЁѡЁ݅ɐȁ=хѡȸ)ѕȀԁ啅̰͡䁝Ёȁɕ)Ёͅ䰁ȁɥ́ٔЁ=䁙)ɔЁݥѠѕɥȁ́ɕѱ䁉ѱ)хāչȰѡ՝́͡͵ȸ!ܴ)ٕȰѡ͔ݡ܁=䁭܁͡ͻeЁͭ)и+q$$ٔͼՍѼ]ЁЁѡ)ݡЁѡɔ$ٔɝѼ)ѡ̻t)є́͡ѡɽ՝܁́͡)Ѽɝٔٔ+qt͡՝̸q$eЁѡЁи)Ёɝٔ)$܁ݡѼݕȁѼ1ЁЁQӊé$t)9=䁅ɽ́ݥѠɅѠ)ɕѠḾձ䁄Qɥٕ́݅丁)MAI%9)%9MA%I%91%YL(