About Regina Ioannou
I was born in Austria, studied in Paris and went on to have an exciting life travelling the world for work.
To many, it looked as though I had an enviable life, and indeed it was blessed with many rewards. However, the pain of losing both my parents in my early twenties was a cloud that hung over me for many years.
Then, just at the moment when I wondered if I might be the luckiest woman alive, living in beautiful Cyprus with the love of my life and our five gorgeous children, my husband dropped dead of a heart attack and I found myself a widow with five bereaved and traumatized children to take care of. Little did I know, at that point, that my troubles had barely begun.
I soon discovered that a “widow” has a particularly low status in the country I was living in, the fact that I was a foreigner seemed to compound my lowly status. I had to fight for my rights and to gain the respect of my husband’s family and the local community. I had to develop coping mechanisms and endurance skills that I could not have imagined. At times I felt like I was swimming upstream with rocks tied to my back. But I survived, and so did my children.
The irony of experiencing such anguish in one of the most beautiful places on earth was never lost on me. Cyprus had become my home, the place I met my husband and the birthplace of all my children, and I fought to stay there and to keep hold of what was rightfully ours.
I have ridden life’s emotional rollercoaster (the one with the most frightening twists and turns!) I have faced so many heart-wrenching moments during my journey through the darkness, but I have lived to tell the tale. Like a phoenix, I rose from the ashes of my shattered life, and am proud of what I have achieved. Having survived my own traumatic journey, I made it my life’s mission to help others survive theirs.