"Listen to the words that others can't speak; speak the words that others can't hear."

Monday, June 4, 2018

When Life Doesn't Go as Planned...

In 8th grade, I had to do a scrapbooking project as part of my final grade in English class. We were asked to put together a scrapbook and were given certain writing prompts to pick from to include in our books.

One of the ones I picked was about “where I [would] be 10 years from now”. At 13 I had to write about where I would be at 23... if you don’t want to read the whole thing below, I’ll give you a bulleted version:

  •  Graduated college
  •  Fulfill my perceived version of my fathers dreams and become a vet
  •  Live on my own or with a fiancé and five dogs
  •  Dream job
  •  Other career options: doctor, animal cop, nurse, veterinary assistant


So, to be honest, at 23 I had like a fifth of one of my dreams checked off the list... actually, to be really honest, at 23 I did get my own place, and also had a suicide attempt that same year and had to give up having my own place.

So the path I took was nothing like what I thought, hoped or expected it to be. I don’t have a degree, or my dream job, I JUST moved out of my parents house a few months ago and I am not even in a relationship so fiancé isn’t even in the near future... and although this is not where I dreamt I would be, I still know that I am blessed and eternally grateful for where I am today.

If life had gone as planned, had I not shattered into a thousand different pieces, I wouldn’t have met all the wonderfully-imperfect people I’ve met today... the ones helping to put me back together again.

I’ve had to learn to be humble and ask for help when I need it. I’ve made mistakes and learned from them too. I’ve learned to set boundaries. I’ve had adventures some people never get to experience, sure, it may be because they happened in a hospital or residential treatment, but trust me— they are adventures nonetheless. Cue: “who left the bag of vomit in the stairwell?” And: telling stories of whose gone the longest without pooping.. adventures. No joke.

I’ve lost.. a lot. I’ve lost friends, family, money, time.. but I’ve gained my life, at least for now. And I know this is a moment of clarity because in reality I’ve been really depressed lately, but I am grateful to still be here and fighting this fight. I’ve also built relationships that I know will last a lifetime and have an outpatient team that supports me 100%. My therapist has been through hell and back with me and she still smiles when she opens the door to see me every week.. sometimes twice a week. If I had to sit and listen to myself talk in circles on a weekly basis for the past six years, I probably would have quit on me by now (but I guess that’s why I have her right?!).

I am grateful. I am blessed. I am not where I thought I would be, but I am much better than I could be. I may not have everything I want, but I have pretty much everything I need. And for those that have stuck around, thank you from the bottom of my heart. Congrats, you met and exceeded 13-year old me’s expectations! (see photo below)

Peace to you tonight—


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