I have always LOVED watching sitcoms. There is something exhilarating about watching families overcoming obstacles and poking fun at each other. However, you always know they love and support each other. The whole situation is filled with laughter and compassion and is over within an hour. My life has NEVER been like that.
Sitcoms are meant to make you laugh until you cry, however, they just made me want to cry. Watching everyone love and care about each other made it more glaringly obvious that my family wasn’t like that.
I know there were happy times in my childhood. My situation wasn’t nearly as bad as others you see on the news. For that, I am extremely grateful. I know it could have been worse.
I was molested as a child… by multiple people. We moved around a lot, and I never felt I was important to anyone… especially my parents. I know they both had it rough too… but, as a child, I didn’t understand why I was so easy to ignore, or why bad things kept happening to me. Was this normal?
Making bad decisions
As an adult, I made bad decisions that made my life even worse. I married young (twice), and divorced young (twice)… and because I didn’t feel worthless enough, entered into a relationship ruled by domestic violence.
When I was finally able to end that relationship, I entered another one with someone who didn’t love me and was an alcoholic. No matter how much I tried, we were both miserable. I refused to end it because I didn’t want one more thing in my life to be a failure. Then, he passed away.
Seeing all of this in print makes it sound pretty bad… and I guess it is… but it didn’t seem that bad because of all of the worse things in the world. I might have felt worthless and unloved… but at least I didn’t lose my home and loved ones in a tsunami, or lose myself or a loved one to a serial killer.
While those seem like insanely graphic, drastic examples… they comforted me. I know my past was bad. For me, there were times I didn’t want to go on (many, many times). Since so many people hurt me in my life, I rationalized that I had to be something wrong. It had to be my flaws that caused everyone to hate me.
Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about why I feel so sad. I was diagnosed with anxiety and depression (not a fun combination), and have a LOT of trouble concentrating. Sitting still for long periods of time is excruciating. If someone says anything negative, or slightly mean, to me… I’m devastated and feel the sadness for days (or longer). Is that really any way to live? Hell no!
What can I do to change?
Overcoming adversity is hard. My past definitely defines my present, but it doesn’t have to define my future! I don’t have to be a victim, and I don’t have to feel so sad. We all have the power to change. I’m just as strong as other people… so what can I do to change?
Finding time to read has always been really difficult. I usually have a small amount of time at night (between the blog and studying), but my room is super dark. That excuse got in my way for a long time before I said to myself “Dummy… buy a lamp!” Yeah, complete and utter exhaustion prevents me from thinking clearly sometimes. I should have bought a lamp a long time ago.
I’ve been forcing myself to read every night. I have my Coach.me app on my phone that reminds me… it truly helps!
I’m currently reading Carmine Gallo’s book The Storyteller’s Secret: From TED Speakers to Business Legends, Why Some Ideas Catch on and Others Don’t. It is a truly amazing and inspiring book. Taking wisdom from every story fills me with hope that I can change my future.
Steve Jobs (Co-Founder of Apple Computers) asks us “What Makes Your Heart Sing?” – For a really long time, I couldn’t believe that I could be both a blogger, and successful with my career. I didn’t have confidence in myself, and figured I would just fail at everything anyway. Well, so what if I’m not “successful”? I’m learning so much and having a blast! I love what I’m doing… that’s the important part!
Mark Burnett (Television Producer) tell us to “Use each “no” to refine your pitch”. I might not be a successful blogger, and I have a LONG way to go until I’m a Funeral Director. I’ll fail a whole bunch more times before I get to where I want to be… but I’ll learn a whole bunch of what NOT to do!
Joel Osteen (Minister and Author) feels that “adversity pushes you into our divine destiny”. I didn’t really like my previous job, but I was so grateful just to have a job that I was determined to do my best. When I lost my job, I was completely devastated. I faced losing my house and my car… and I had babies to feed. What was I going to do? I felt sorry for myself for exactly ONE day… and then I picked myself up and found the job I was meant to have. I’ve never been happier with a job, and it never would have happened if I hadn’t been laid off. The job wasn’t only an awesome position… but the pay was over $3.00 more an hour. I agree, money isn’t everything… but to have an amazing job AND more money to take care of my family??? I couldn’t have prayed for more.
Albert Bandura (Psychologist) says to “take responsibility for your own educational development”. If I’d relied on what I’d known when I started my blog… I wouldn’t have gotten very far. I learn something new every day, and couldn’t be happier. Learning something new is so much fun, and is incredibly empowering.
I won’t feel better all at once… but there is hope that I will feel better. I just have to choose to be happy.