Finding HOPE - Tori

Every writer looks for the great, American love story; a beautiful couple, a fabulous journey with purpose and a happy ending.  Tori and Nick represent such a story.  Both collegiate level athletes, they fell in love and married in college.  Both started out successful in their respective careers eventually expanding their union with a little girl.  From afar it all seems perfect, a fairy tale.

Yet we all know that the crabgrass of life is often hidden from afar.  Challenges faced this young couple.  Nick reached one level of success in the National Football League but then plateaued to a point where he considered leaving the game.  Tori's athletic and physical strength were diminished by a rare illness which was misdiagnosed.  How did they  survive the rocky potholes of everyday life?  Their love and strength in each other and their faith in a loving God.

 From Tori's blog

"Leading up to July of 2013, I was  healthy, active and excited for the future. After graduating in 2012 with a business degree and 4 years of college volleyball behind me, I figured the possibilities were endless and I never foresaw a health crisis in the near future. A year after working at Nike Inc. and living an active lifestyle in Portland, OR, everything changed. In July of 2013, at 23 years old, I suddenly became ill and had no idea why. Literally one day I was fine, and the next I felt dizzy, nauseous, faint, fatigued, and just plain awful. I began to see multiple doctors and underwent a battery of tests for about 6 weeks until I was diagnosed with Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome-POTS."  (more info about POTS on Tori's website  )

 Nick was given a second chance at football and  was a major factor in Philadelphia's first Super Bowl Victory.  That alone will forever cement his legacy in Philly.   Nick credited Tori for being his sounding board and strength when the times were tough. They relied heavily on their faith during good times and bad.  It was appropriate that they shared this joy together.

Overcoming some challenges of life and being successful in your career does not guarantee smooth sailing.  In 2019, Tori and Nick lost their second child 15 weeks into the pregnancy.  This was just at a time when they made a major career move.   In an Instagram quote she admitted to having a variety of emotions about the loss but that using her faith and relationship with Nick she was working through the loss to find the lesson.

Tori wrote:

"I did not know what it meant to have faith “as small as a mustard seed” before this time (Matthew 17:20). Why do you think that is? Because I never HAD to. Finally, I hit a point where the faith I had just wasn’t going to cut it, so I had to make a choice. I could become idle and do nothing, or I could rejoice and grow. Through this growth is where I am realizing that God makes NO mistakes and that there is both a distinct purpose here on earth and an eternal reward in heaven for what we are going through. He could be using us to be a blessing here on earth or to bring someone else to Christ and why can’t we be okay with that? "

 "More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”

-Romans 5:3-5

 Only God knows what the future holds for this young couple.  However it is obvious that with a firm foundation of friendship, love and faith they are ready for whatever life has in store for them.  They serve as a model for other young people.  Just like it takes practice to shine on the athletic field, active communication and a participatory faith are invaluable when facing the roller coaster we call life.

 For the purpose of full disclosure, I was not able to contact Tori or Nick Foles directly despite trying.  The information above is a compilation of their social media and news media postings.  It was worthwhile to share this story because all the aspects of life do not evade us no matter our status in life, but  God is there for all of us to find meaning and purpose.

 Jim Randazzo

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