New beginnings and new stresses

I haven’t been on here in over a week. Its been kinda crazy starting college and all. But today I felt like I needed to write about something. This is something similar to my last post but it’s been bothering me a great deal this week.

For those of you that do not know, I was in a very rigorous program in high school called International Baccalaureate (I.B. for short). So during high school I took college level courses and attained an I.B. diploma as well as a high school one. I say all of this to say that in high school I endured more than most, academically, and emotionally. And now that I am in college I am stressing just as much in high school. So today I had to take a step back and understand that while I do have a lot on my plate, I survived high school. I survived my family being ripped apart, I survived I.B., I survived losing a lot of friends, and I survived being very sick while balancing school, soccer, and multiple clubs.

I can do this. I can balance work and being a soccer manager. I can balance being in the honors program and creating my own service organization. I can balance school work and a social life.

Starting something new means a change. And I don’t know about you, but change scares me. I am a person who likes routine and I like having a schedule. So with this being my first week of college I don’t really have a routine yet. I had a mini panic attack wondering how will I do all of this but I took deep breath (and a nap) and I remembered that I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:13).

New beginnings are good. Change is good, But you have to understand that it takes time to have a sense of normalcy. and when new challenges come your way, you have to remember what you have already been through. Put your hand over your heart; that heart beat right there, it means you survived Hell and you are still here. Life will always have hurdles you have to jump but many of you have survived the worst of it. You chose to remain on this earth when you felt like being alive was worse than death. You decided to keep going one more day. One day at a time you recovered or are still recovering.

Remember that change is good. Change is stressful. But take a deep breath and step back and look at how far you have already come. Maybe you are still sick, or still hurting, (I know I am), and if that is you please reach out to someone. Contact me or the school counselor or a friend or trusted adult. I felt like I had nowhere to go and no one to turn to but then I did. The key is to keep going. I had to keep going to find those trusted people. The key is to give it one more day. Sometimes one day at a time is too much. So, if it is, just take it one hour at a time. Give yourself a chance, and do not let anyone tell you that you can’t do something. I defied the odds. I am still defying the odds. And I have your back.

Love yourself, trust yourself. You can do it. You can do ALL things,

I moved a mountain

I have always gotten a knot in my stomach when even thinking about talking to my dad about everything gone wrong between us. I wasn’t scared of him, but I was scared of the aftermath. I was scared of causing someone else to be uncomfortable. I was scared of tearing down an already fragile relationship. But this week, things changed. This week I took a leap of faith. This week I had courage like no other. This week we began to heal our relationship.

My dad and I have always had a gap in our relationship. There has always been something missing. What he thought was best at the time, turned out disastrous for me later down the road. He thought he was doing the right thing, and I was too afraid to tell him any different. I am a peacekeeper. I do not like drama. I do not like fights or arguments, and I would rather have myself get hurt than anyone else around me. But going through what I have been going through these last two years has shown me that sometimes those difficult conversations have to be had in order to move forward. You cannot live in the past and you can’t dwell on things you cannot change. But, you still have to acknowledge those things because they were real and they hurt us.

Before this week I had never told my dad what happened throughout my childhood and the trauma I went through. I never told him what happened and I always held that against him. I held something against him that he was not even aware of. Through my own healing and self-reflection lately, I was able to see that. And this week, we both took responsibility for our mistakes and we took the biggest step forward we ever had.

In my heart I know that my dad would lay down his life for me in a second. I know that he loves me and I know he feels guilty. But this week I could see it for myself. I saw that my pain hurt him. I saw his raw emotions and I saw that he really wants to be a daddy to me like I always wanted. This week I saw a great foundation being built between us that we can move forward with. He cannot go back in time and neither can I, but this week I saw that he would go back and change what happened in a heart beat and that is what I needed. I waited years and years to hear the words he said this week and I felt a weight being lifted off my shoulders.

These last two years have been about healing: physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. The stress of what happened made me sick. And I will deal with that for the remainder of my life. But my dad is sick too. And that loose end was tied up this week. That loose end is now a knot that we will continue to work through.

This week could have went 2 drastically different ways. And it went the best way possible. My leap of faith was the best choice I have ever made. Having that little ounce of courage helped me and my dad heal. I was scared, but I was fearless. It sounds like an oxymoron but it isn’t. Because I was scared and I overcame that fear with faith and strength. I found the strength inside myself. I want to tell you that just because you have had a bad relationship with someone (maybe parent, grandparent, friend, aunt, uncle, brother, sister etc.) your entire life does not mean that it is beyond repair. Just because you have not spoken to them or had a real conversation with them in years means nothing. I want you to feel the strength that I felt. I want you to have God on your side. I have no doubt we had angels in there with us this week. I want you to know that taking a leap of faith can change your world, and it can help you heal. Having faith the size of a mustard seed can move a mountain. Imagine it, you moving a mountain. That is amazing to think about. You need to hear that I believe in you. I believe that you can move that mountain. I believe that you can be honest with the person who has caused you pain. I believe that you are strong.

A faith that breeds bravery

The bible talks about having a child-like faith, and I never really understood that until I witnessed it first-hand. Children have a type of faith like no other. They believe without question, and they have a hope that never dies. Teens and adults doubt, and question things all the time. We ask the “who, what, why, and where”. Kids don’t think about those things, you ask them to trust you or believe in something, and they will.

If you tell a kid who is dying of leukemia that it will be ok, they wont doubt that. If you tell a kid who is missing a leg that they can climb a mountain, they will climb the mountain. Many times adults and the peers around you have been through experiences that have made them doubt themselves and others. They almost always see the glass-half-empty because they have had life experiences that led them to believe that is how you don’t get hurt. But I have learned that having that blind faith, will help you go farther than doubt ever will.

Ever since I was a kid I was always positive, and I saw the good in everyone and everything. I always trusted and believed in people even when they hurt me. I chose to give everyone the benefit of the doubt. To be honest I was probably naive, but that was, and is, who I am.

Two years ago I was not a positive person anymore, everything was not fine, and everyone hurt me. Everyone was forcing me to do and say thing I was not ready to and everything had a dark undertone. I was in a black hole of sorrow and negativity where the “trusted” adults around me continued to push me farther into a negative mentality. I lost the faith that I had. I lost the blind trust that I gave people. I lost hope and bravery.

But somewhere between two summers ago and now, I gained my faith back. I began to see the good in people again. I began to believe the positive words I would tell people when times were hard. I started to believe my own words of hope and triumph. Everyone telling me “just be positive”, “everything will get better”, (and my personal favorite) “you’re fine just have faith”, were just empty words. I had to start to believe them for myself. I had to come to realize that I needed to take my own advice. Empty words of advice have no power. People will give advice just to give it, but they do not understand that no one will believe your words until you believe them yourself. Your words have the power to change people. But you have to have faith in your words and you have to trust yourself in what you tell others.

I learned as I got my faith back, in Jesus and in people, that I was a happier person. I started to believe that things will be ok after all. The child’s faith I had for so many years did not go away, it was just tucked away while I learned how to heal. With faith comes hope and bravery. With hope and bravery come strength and perseverance.

I want you to hear that it is ok not to be positive all the time when you’re struggling to heal. But I also want you to know that blind faith with give you back the hope you think that you lost. I want you to know that with faith breeds love, hope, and bravery.