The greatest challenge in life is discovering who you are. The second greatest is being happy with what you find.
As I continue on this journey we call life, I have my difficult times just like anyone else. The last few weeks have been a little challenging for me, as I wrote about last week. Throughout this entire process, I've had to do more soul searching than I ever thought I would feel the need to do. What motivates me? Who do I want to be? What do I want out of my life?
The weight loss was a gigantic first step for me. It has allowed me to feel confident about myself. I don't mean that weight loss is the only way to find confidence in yourself because nothing could be further from the truth. But, for me, it's been a huge piece of finding that confidence. Honestly, I've never been comfortable in my own skin. There are things I've always wanted to do, to try but I always felt that my weight was a huge barrier to experiencing different things in life. Because I couldn't understand why anyone would want to be around a girl who couldn't figure out why food was such a comfort which led to not taking good care of herself. Which, of course, leads to that whole depression thing and not wanting to be around others because you don't see what you bring to the lives of those you encounter. This is something I still struggle with on a daily basis. Because I have so many insecurities and trust issues from being burned in my past, I question people and their motives. Then I question myself. Granted, it happens much less often than it used to which I am oh so thankful for. I have a confidence I never knew existed. But I'm still building it and figuring out who I am step by step. At times, I wish that process could be a hell of a lot faster. After all, I'm 34. Most people don't think they will still be figuring all of this out in their mid-thirties.
One thing that has helped me immensely is being able to talk to other people about where I am at and how I am feeling. I am enormously guilty when it comes to bottling things up inside of myself. I mean, if I bury them deeply enough, they won't affect me, right? Wrong! Eventually it leads to an explosion of emotion that I don't always know how to handle. My sister is, quite literally, my best friend in the world. Of course we have our disagreements but there isn't anyone out there who gets where I come from more than she does. We grew up together and she has always been there for me in ways I can't even describe. And, through a great conversation with her this weekend, I realized a few things and felt so much better about where I am heading in life. My cousin Mere is another one of those people in my life who seems to just get me. We were able to finally have some catch up sessions over the last few days and, to be honest, I have absolutely no idea how long we talked on the phone. We are cut from the same cloth and she helps me see things in ways I don't think I could on my own.
So, to answer the questions I asked at the beginning of this -
1. What motivates me?
My family. Some people may find it strange that I am with my family so much. My nieces and nephew are my whole world. And, I'm pretty certain, they love Aunt Mimi in ways I don't even realize. When they run up to me and give the greatest hugs every time I see them, it just melts my heart. And makes me so grateful that we live so close to each other. My parents, my brother, my sister and, of course, their spouses, are also amazing blessings in my life. I want to be happy and healthy for them. But, most importantly I want to be happy and healthy for myself.
2. Who do I want to be?
Ya know, I'm still figuring this one out. And I know it's going to be a process. And, every day, I become more okay with that. I just know I want to be happy and find people to share my life with. That might mean a great group of friends or it might mean a future husband.
3. What do I want out of my life?
Pretty simple - happiness. But, when you think about it, that's a huge task. I know I am going to have days and times where I feel down. And that's okay. Everyone goes through times like that. But, I want the happy times to far outweigh the sad times. And, I know I am well on my way to making that happen.
This week, my friend Kira invited me to go to church with her. I went to church growing up but, honestly, I never really connected with it. So, as I've grown older, I've just stepped away from it. In some ways, I do believe I've been mad at God for quite awhile. Because I didn't think my life was what I wanted. So, this was a huge step for me. Something completely different from the way I was raised and with people I don't really know. I really enjoyed it. And I will go back. Maybe not every week. Or, maybe I will. While these may seem like small things, these types of steps are huge for me. They are evidence of how much I've grown and how far I've come in a relatively short amount of time.
Realizing that I have a lot to offer to the people I encounter in this life is an amazing gift.
And I look forward to all the steps I will keep taking. No matter how difficult it is. And, if you know me at all, they will be difficult but necessary steps and changes in my life.
Love yourself first and everything else falls in line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.