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A Fighting Faith

I began teaching at Cornerstone in 2017, prior to that, I taught at Cumberland Christian Academy (CCA) for 22 years. A former CCA teacher told me about Cornerstone, and I absolutely love the opportunity to teach third-grade math/science. The University-Model of schooling keeps parents involved heavily in their children's lives, emotionally, spiritually, and educationally. I’m especially blessed that now, I have two grandchildren that attend Cornerstone, Evelynn (K) and Kaden (2). My grandchildren love Cornerstone, and my daughter and I co-teach on their home days.  

Kathy Nixon with her daughter, Kelsey Shepperd, and grandchildren,  Evelynn- Kindergarten, Kaden-2nd grade, and Tucker-2 years old. 

April 20, 2016

On April 20, 2016, my world turned upside down. In the span of a week, I went from running the trails at Kennesaw Mountain to a hospital ventilator. Little did I know that I would be a patient in three different hospitals for the next 101 days. I was unable to breathe, speak, or move. Before this, I had not had a sick day for the last 20-plus years. By the grace of God, a diagnosis was made. At age 58, I was diagnosed with Guillain-Barre Syndrome, also known as GBS.

What is Guillain Barre Syndrome? 

Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS) is a rare neurological disorder in which the body's immune system mistakenly attacks part of its peripheral nervous system—the network of nerves located outside of the brain and spinal cord. GBS can range from a very mild case with brief weakness to nearly devastating paralysis, leaving the person unable to breathe independently. Fortunately, most people eventually recover from even the most severe cases of GBS. After recovery, some people will continue to have some degree of weakness.

Guillain-Barré syndrome can affect anyone. It can strike at any age (although it is more frequent in adults and older people), and both sexes are equally prone to the disorder. GBS is estimated to affect about one person in 100,000 each year.

Something Shifted

I had a phenomenal support group. I felt the support of my family, church, and an endless amount of neighbors and friends. They all took turns caring for me. I wasn’t able to communicate, move, breathe, eat, swallow, or even close my eyes. It was as though I was in a coma, but awake! I asked God many times how His plan was going to affect others. I was on a ventilator for 52 days and someone was with me the entire time, both day and night. And then, something shifted. The ventilator was removed, and rehabilitation could begin. I had to learn to breathe, speak, swallow, and move my body all over again. They say “if you don’t use it, you lose it”. Well, this is a very true statement.

Stay the Course 

On July 4th, 2016 I sat in a wheelchair in front of Shepherd Rehabilitation Center and watched the Peachtree Road Race in my electric wheelchair. On July 4th, 2017, I ran my 27th Peachtree Roadrace!  And this year, my Peachtree race time was 51:36. This was such an amazing reminder that when we praise Him in all things and through all circumstances, we experience His grace and love.

How have you seen God at work in the darkest of times?
How has He shown Himself faithful?
Is there an area you are struggling with today?

Our prayer is that you can still see how great God is in the midst of your storm. We’d love to hear from you!

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