Wednesday, January 8, 2014

A Year In Review

 View from the Starbucks in Downtown Denver
Any of you that generally follow my blog know that it usually takes something dramatic occurring in my life to get me to the point where I feel the need to write. This time is no different. However I have been contemplating writing for a while now and although it hasn't taken place, I truly believe there is no better time than now. I finished my day of work at 10 am this morning and having all obligations completed so early in the day allows me the ability to plan activities that bring me some sort of peace. Something that clears my mind and relaxes the stress that life tends to cause. Most days I would have no hesitation in choosing the gym over every other option but today was different. Today, my heart is in a unique place of needing to write not only for myself but for each of you who have been there day in and day out since this journey began, as well as, those of you who have come along and been my rock and support in this new and unfamiliar place that I currently call home. Next week marks one year. One year since I packed "some" of my stuff, my mom reminds me often how much is still in the house, and moved to Colorado to embark on a new journey. It started off as a journey to figure out my career but in reality it has turned out to be a journey of finding myself. A journey that has not only left me questioning my future but also my existence. I have found myself in a very interesting place, a place where I have never cried so much and have never been forced to actually deal with a multitude of things that I have ran away from for a very long time. Yes, you read that correctly. The one thing I always told myself that I never wanted and I have come to find out that is all I have done. Most of you are probably thinking "well she really didn't run away like most people would", and you are right about that. Interestingly enough I have been running from these issues since even before I lost my dad. The "issues" that are coming to surface are thoughts, emotions, and insecurities that I have been attempting to mask for most of my life.

In the past four days the flashback on my life has been severe. The flashback of the day I lost my dad became even more real than it ever had. It was in those moments that I realized just like every other thing in my life I have been running away from actually accepting that my dad is no longer here. I have spent more hours crying than I have in years. I have had no appetite. As usual I have found myself living in the gym, spending anywhere from four to six hours and some days going twice. The pain in my chest has been unbearable at times. I have spent more hours alone stuck in my own head than I have in months. Without going into a lot of detail, my mental state has been really bad and it's a state that I am not proud to even sit here and talk about. I should have seen this coming though. The past five months or so have been pretty rough with a lot of different ups and downs. I have found myself questioning the person I am along with the person I want to become. I have been incredibly lost and haven't wanted to admit to anyone how bad it really was. I have found myself running to the completely wrong things knowing that the only result would be a complete life collapse. The bad thing is in those deciding moments for some reason I haven't cared enough to make the right decision. The person I have become is a person I don't even know. I have a hard time looking in the mirror and seeing myself for what I know in my heart I am worthy of. I now understand what people mean when they say they cant seem to find the ability to see their self-worth. A lot of things have become extremely real to me, things most people never want to face but even with that said I need to face them. I need to accept help and I also need to get help. I need to get my life back.

As I sit here with so much flowing through my head, it's hard to even write it all down or find the words that I want to speak. Some of this may be difficult for some of you to read because it's very possible that I am being too honest. The thing is though...I don't care. I don't care how hard this is to read because this is who I am and it's the side of me that needs to be seen. This isn't a cry out for attention or help it's putting myself on blast for anyone and everyone to read. It's forcing me to face every single thing that I am currently dealing with and not run away. As a kid I found ways of hiding everything I was dealing with. Sometimes the things I used to hide were not the best choices. Over time those options were what I went to when I felt myself falling. As I got older I ran to different things because stuff such as alcohol and drugs were readily available to me at the snap of a finger. Again, over time I have learned to run to those same things. The difference now is I tend to know what I am doing and in the past I haven't always known or maybe it was the same situation that I just didn't care in the moment. I didn't view myself as negatively as I do now. I wasn't as hard on myself as I am now. I also didn't have people around that could see what I was doing.

I can't honestly sit here and tell you that I was in a much better place before I lost my dad because I don't know if that was the case. And since losing my dad, happiness has come in small doses. I haven't truly been happy with my life, my present, or myself in a very long time. I have been hiding behind a lot of lies and most of those lies I actually began to believe. After losing my dad I put everything I had in to the people around me. Sick people, hurt people, those in need, friends, family and anyone else that came along for the ride. It's what I always did. The minute things became difficult in my life I put everything I had into those around me allowing me to hide my own issues. The problem was and still is that I never fixed myself. I never even attempted to fix my own heart and repair the damage that the death of my father caused along with the darkness my past had caused. I tried to live a normal life smiling and laughing because that was what everyone wanted from me. At the time having a smile on my face was more important to those around me, so I did my best to smile. I spent countless hours working, working out, and fundraising in hopes of escaping everything I was feeling. The truth is someone as hurt and lost as I was had no real ability to help others. Yes, it sure did make things easier but in the long run it has made things much more difficult. I am now in a different state but still dealing with similar issues that existed in San Diego. I don't want to sit here and say that I was running from actually dealing with the stuff I needed to but now that I look back on my decision and I can definitely admit that I believed moving here would give me a fresh new start. I was hoping that without the constant reminders of my dad everywhere I went that I would be able to focus on the goals I had for myself, but the one major problem is I don't really have true goals for myself. Interestingly enough with one week left before that year mark that I talked so much about these past four days have been filled with extreme realizations.

Today I find myself in the same coffee shop that I used to visit daily the first few months I moved to Colorado. Those first few months were filled with the hopes of figuring out the path I was going to take. I searched for jobs, wrote in my blog, listened to music and found peace in this very special Starbucks that is surrounded by pure beauty. However, the reasoning behind coming here today is far more important than any job search could ever be. This is about me. Nobody but me. I no longer can be that person that constantly puts myself, my emotions, and my thoughts on the back burner. I have to face what is going on. I have allowed people to manipulate me and attempt to steal any happiness I have and it's causing me to physically and mentally break down. The pain I am feeling is much more severe than any surgery or injury I have had. I have allowed people to hurt one of the most important things in the body, my heart. I have given the wrong people the ability to use my life against me. But rather than walking away I have stuck around and took a beating because I didn't want to hurt anyone no matter how bad I was hurting. I have spent most of my life doing what others wanted of me or needed of me in hopes of making their life better even just the slightest bit. I have placed some people above the rest of the world because I was scared of losing them. I have been living this way for years. I am now realizing that I have lived a life of making others happy rather than taking the time to figure out what makes me happy. Some of those same people have acted as if they cared about what made me happy but in reality when it came down to it what I truly wanted really had no meaning. I have watched people find new ways of attacking me, my life and the way I have dealt with the death of my father. It has been an experience that I never thought would occur but somehow underneath all the pain I have been able to see how it has ultimately made me a better person.

At this point in this post you may be wondering things such as; what have I learned, how have I changed, what are my next steps, and how do I get my life back. The answer to those questions are going to take time. But I can sit here and admit to all of you that I have a core group of people in Colorado and in a lot of other states who have been by my side every step of the way. These people have taken the time to remind me that no matter what anyone tries to take from me they can't change the person I am. I have been taught that true friends want you to be happy. Those friends will love you unconditionally no matter who you are, what you want or how you live your life. They will support you constantly even through the dumbest decisions you may make. They will see the pain in your eyes and be available at a moments notice. No matter how many mistakes you make they will be there picking you back up and helping you find yourself. Sometimes those people are the most unexpected people you could ever imagine. Sometimes the people you expect are nowhere to be seen. But in time you learn that just because someone has always been a piece of your life doesn't mean they always will be. People come and go but the ones who matter stick around. Those who matter will push you to be the best version of yourself even when you don't know who you are or where you should even begin searching.

Truth is the past is an uncomfortable reminder of a lot of pain and heartache especially when you are forced to face it. However, the future can be just as scary because sometimes the last thing you want to get rid of is things of the past. Stepping away from who you thought you were or what you thought you wanted is never an easy thing. Being confident in what you deserve and willing to risk whatever it takes to have those things in your life is incredibly scary. We all fear the unknown in some way or another. Not one person can sit here and say they don't. Uncertainty is nerve wrecking because in our minds all we can think about is what if things don't work out, what if I don't make the cut or don't get the job. The sad thing is we spend so much time contemplating what could be that a lot of times we tend to miss out on what is there. We stare so long at each possibility and never actually take a step forward. Being scared is not a bad thing but allowing fear to alter your life and your happiness is a completely different story. I can honestly sit here and say that currently fear has controlled my life. Fear of what people think, what they may talk about, of being hurt and most importantly of actually following my heart and allowing myself to be truly happy with the things I WANT for my life not what everyone else wants.

I am done allowing people to choose my happiness or better yet be in control of my happiness. From here on out I am going to choose to follow my own path for my life and that includes those I want in my life. It's no longer about if I am good for others lives, it's are they good for my life. Are they going to bring my life more joy and happiness. Will they be there on my worst days and do everything in their power to make my day better. Will we smile and laugh but still remember that it's not a bad thing to cry every once in a while. Will we take the bad days, work through them, and continue to grow in our relationship together. Will we open our hearts to all the possibilities that life can offer and trust that it's truly possible for people to care about every aspect of our lives. If you can answer yes to all of these then there is always a place for you in my life. This doesn't mean that I no longer care for every single person that enters my life or that they don't have some kind of meaning, it just means that those I keep close will be a much different group than I previously have chosen. The people I allow to be apart of my everything will have shown me that they care more about my heart growing rather than breaking. I will keep the deep aspects of my life a little more hidden and only allow those that really care about me to see that side. People will no longer be able to use my past against me to cause pain and heartache. This is my life, and if you prove to be worth it I will give you everything I possibly can until my final days here on earth.

Thank you to those people who have been there constantly and especially the past few days. I know it hasn't been the easiest of days but without each of you I wouldn't be sitting here realizing so much about my life. Those of you in Colorado, thank you for taking me in and for making me feel like a sense of family. And for those of you who have been there for years and years, thank you. I am thankful that in my time out here some of my friendships at home have actually grown to be much stronger than they ever have been. The people who have made it a priority to keep in touch, and those who have been my rock through a very difficult time. In the past few days the love I have seen from some of my closest friends has been unreal. Thank you for accepting me as I am and for being willing to love me through very tough situations. One final thing I am thankful for is love. Love makes this world a better place, love helps us grow and become better people,  and it's what makes life worth living. Love challenges us to be better individuals and even when love causes pain it still proves to us that we are lucky to be given the ability to be loved and love in so many different aspects.

God Bless,

1 comment:

  1. Taylor. I commend you for having the courage to pour your heart out. We have enjoyed having you in Colorado although we would have loved to spent more time with you this past year. I think more people battle with depression then let on...myself included. One thing you said is simply not true though. God uses broken people all the time. We are all broken on different levels and unfortunately will never be 'fixed' in this life. The work you did in fundraising, and reaching out to others made a difference. Not necessarily in fixing your life, but in fixing others. This brings me to my point that God put you here. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20. You are not your own. This is an even tougher reality. Of course God wants to heal you, but that healing will come through stepping into his will. The path to our own happieness will always fall short without Him. I will be praying for you and I hope you seek out the help you need. Only God and His perfect will can heal you. We are here to support you as family, I just beg of you to nto focus inward on your healing. Focus on living out what God has put you here for. You are much more influential than you know and can change the world by diving into His plan.