I have a special anniversary coming up in a few days, a day I think of as my actual “birthday.” It is the day, 13 days ago, that I decided to let go of the way I had been living my life and the day I asked for help. This day was a long time coming, and truthfully could have, and probably should have come earlier in my life, but it came when it was supposed to, and when I was ready, 100%, to do the work and find a solution a problem that was dead set on taking my life. A big part of how I became ready to make this big change came in part from a story a friend shared with me about his struggle with the same disease. The night he told me his story, it seemed like just that, an incredible true story of someone who had fought his way out of the darkness to now live in the light. A remarkable journey, and one I was quite in awe of, and it remained just an incredible story for months after that. But for whatever reason, those months later, on a dark dark night, a night I became very scared I may harm myself to stop my pain, I remembered that story, and for the first time I recognized myself in the beginning of that story, the part where there was pain and suffering, it resonated with my life then, and I realized that there may just be hope for someone like me, that maybe, just maybe, I too, like my friend, might have a fighting chance against my own head that wanted me dead.
I have never forgotten that story, and that gift that friend gave to me so many years ago, and I make it a point to give back that gift whenever I can, this blog is a huge part of that, but being of service, or helping others can come in many forms, it can be as simple as a smile or saying hello, or, perhaps just showing up. When we simply show up we show others that they matter, they’re worth it, and depending on where you’ve shown up to, you may also show someone who is there that there is hope, and they matter. You see, it was a little light of hope that kept me going, kept me moving to the light back then, it wasn’t very bright at first, but it was there, and it was enough to get me to keep putting one step in front of the other, even when my head told me I couldn’t, hope told me I could and to just do it and trust where that step would lead me.
Hope is something magical. You can’t see it on it’s own, but you can in others. You can see it in people’s eyes, in their actions, in their words, and when hope is there anything can happen. We can offer our hope to others by showing them we care, we see them, we hear them, by doing nice things, or by simply being there. In my early days, when things were still dark, sometimes just seeing someone else struggling with the same issues I was gave me hope, to know I wasn’t alone, and when someone with those same struggles had any kind of success, we all felt like we succeeded because even if it wasn’t our personal victory, we saw that it was possible, and we all kept going.
We all have the ability to help other people everyday, whether small or large. We can offer our heart, our truth, or kindness, and compassion, and you just never know how that could impact that person’s life, they may even be writing about it 13 years later from the other side of that pain and that struggle, grateful for the hope you shared with them on one important day. SLAY on!
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you feel like you have something to offer others? Do you see that your struggles may give someone else comfort or hope? Have you received comfort or hope from someone else’s struggles? How? When we do something to help another individual it takes us outside of ourselves, even on our worst day, in fact, especially on our worst day, that time we spend to help another person becomes about them, and it takes focus off of ourselves, and many times, just by reaching out, even with a smile and a hello, that darkness we may be feeling lifts and our day becomes brighter. Every one of us has something to offer, we all have experiences that may be just what someone else needs to hear about, whether you’ve overcome them or not, it’s the commonality that helps us through a tough time, and sometimes, even with the intention of helping someone else, it helps us most of all.
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you