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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Facing Demons

“'Tis better to have loved and lost
than never to have loved at all.”

Over the years I have come to realize that I am not a victim of my past, but rather a survivor. This is where I draw the majority of my strength from and I have realized that it is also what separates me from others in many cases. A survivor is to a victim as oil is to water; they don’t mix. Looking back, I recognize now why some relationships (family, friends, co-workers, etc…) would have never worked out no matter how hard we tried and why other bonds are so strong.

“Life doesn't give you the people you want, it gives you the ones you NEED:
To help you, hurt you, leave you, or love you…
and to make you into the person you were meant to be.”

I am not sure where the above quote came from or when I first saw it, but I swear by it. Sure, when I look back over my life, there are a ton of things I would never wish on my worst enemy; but if they never would have happened, then who would I be now? I realize now that “these people” were put into my life to hurt me and, in a few cases, to leave me as well. But I also know now that they helped me. They were in my life to give me strength, courage, and confidence in myself. Because of them, obstacles now present a challenge to me; not defeat. Not to mention that I have learned from their mistakes and have/will “break the cycle” as they say.

It took me years to figure things out and get where I am today but, thankfully, I have had many people to lean on for support during the bumpy ride I took to get here. I admit that it wasn’t always positive support (no regrets, although hindsight is 20/20), but I am glad that when I needed it most I found the RIGHT people to surround myself with. I needed those people (yes, even the bad ones in their time). They helped me, they loved me, and they were a crucial part in making me who I am today. Without them, I may not have been here at all…

Except, where are those people now? What place do they have in my life today? Now that I can stand on my own two feet, who remains alongside me? This is something I have been asking myself over and over the last couple of weeks and I am struggling with some of the answers I have found. It’s never easy, even when someone hurts and leaves you, but what about the ones who love and care about you? Who helped you get your life on track and then vanish, often times with no forewarning? After everything I have been taught, that is one thing I never learned how to accept… not well, anyhow.

I have come to terms with many things in my past. I understand why some people hurt me, why others have left me, and even why some have come back. I try to welcome all of these things into my life some way or another because in the greater scheme of things it all makes sense. But some of the more recent events don’t make sense. I have been betrayed and abandoned many times before, but I can count on one hand the times I have had to let go of someone I truly cared about! The wounds are still fresh, and I guess that only time will tell – but I am hurting and not afraid to say so!

I am gathering the courage to confront my demons one by one, but some of their faces shock me…