BIANCA — Foul Weather Gear Chapter

Bianca’s grandmother helped prepare her for some of the foulest weather of her life.

And then, her grandmother died, right in the middle of one of the ugliest divorces Bianca could imagine: that of her parents.   It was in the very beginning of this 5-year divorce that Bianca’s grandmother had her deepest impact.

Her grandmother’s go-to foul-weather gear? A smile.

“Smile regardless,” her grandmother would say.

Even after her death, this advice helped Bianca weather this storm, and the ones that would come.   She learned that even though her thoughts may have been dark  if she challenged her thinking, she could smile… regardless.  For Bianca, this simple advice grew into a habit of doing the good stuff regardless.

Since the divorce of her parents and the death of her grandmother, Bianca has really had the opportunity to put her grandmother’s advice to work.

Recruited as a sprinter for her college swim team, Bianca experienced health challenges that kept her out of the pool…for a full season.  Being able to return to swimming became an incredibly difficult game of “wait and see” and coach-run practices were replaced by doctor-prescribed exercises.  When facing a cancer scare, further complicating and delaying her return to the pool, Bianca again smiled regardless and leaned on her friends and coaches for support. Even though she couldn’t swim competitively, she was determined to be the best teammate she could be and was voted “Most Inspirational” by her teammates.

Her determination to smile regardless has helped Bianca become more resilient and enabled her to find positive ways to deal with every situation, no matter the circumstance.

Bianca’s words of wisdom for other young women and teenagers is simple:  “When there’s no light to be found, be that light.  If you wonder what you can do today… you can smile… regardless.”

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