The last 16 months of my life have brought to light for me a lot of new things about myself, maybe not all new, but things I'd at the very least forgotten. I've had some moments that I'm not so proud of and others that I'm quite proud of. I'm a strong person and I think I always have been, but along the way I lost some of that. In some areas of my life I never had it to begin with. I'm realizing that in so many situations I will stand up for others and for what I believe in, but when it comes to going to bat for myself and taking control of my life, I often avoid it. I worry too much about who it might effect and how it might effect them, putting aside what it's doing to me in favor of not hurting the other person.
Part of learning these things about myself is I've done a much better job of establishing personal boundaries. This is a first for me, I've always lived kind of fast and loose. I'm a more valuable person than what I've let myself think I was in the past. I've sold myself short thinking that people... men in particular... would only ever want something to do with me if that's who I was. It's been a hard road to travel and it's taken me about 32 years to discover that's not true. And if it is true, those people aren't worth it. This last year has been hard. But they say that which doesn't kill you makes you stronger. I'm stronger now than I was a year ago. Not any less scared of what's to come or where life is going, but I'm stronger and that's important to me. Knowing that I'm making positive strides forward and that I'm learning more about myself every day has been very empowering. If I could bottle it up and sell it, I'm pretty sure I'd be a millionaire. My hope is that some day I'll tell someone my stories, one of the teens I work with or even my own children, and they'll be able to learn from my mistakes and be able to make more positive choices for themselves. I don't know if it will happen, I don't expect that it will. But I believe I'm in the right kind of job, doing exactly the kind of work I should be doing and surely my life experiences will benefit me in the workplace at some point. Either through sharing my highs and lows or just being able to lend a sympathetic ear because I understand what the person talking to me is going through.
amor y paz,