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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Rock Bottom

"Rock bottom became the solid foundation 
on which I rebuilt my life." - J.K. Rowling

It might sound silly to compare my life to this quote but I've seen it before and, each time, it has really resonated with me.  Rock Bottom is usually considered to be a bad place.  But, upon some reflection, I actually think it is the best thing that could have happened to me on several occasions. 

The way I look at it goes like this:

1.  If I hadn't hit rock bottom with regards to my struggles with weight and the depression issues it took me a long time to admit I have (although under control now), I never would have experienced the numerous blessings I've had in my life over the past 2 years.  Albeit slowly, I've learned how to trust people.  And, although it isn't something I do easily, I am a little more willing to take a chance and try to get to know people.  I'm still super guarded around people I don't know and still have trust issues.  I try to not dwell on things that have happened to me in the past but it's not always that simple.  The smallest things can bring me right back to the past.  The difference now?  I am strong enough to push through those memories and I find a little more strength each time I do.   It's helped me rebuild and redefine my life in ways I never thought would happen for me.

2.  My job - Although I worked with a lot of great people at my previous job, I just wasn't happy any more.  There were a lot of reasons that I don't feel the need to dwell on now.  I never imagined how much a change in where I go on a daily basis could make such an enormous difference in my life.  I had just hit a point where I needed a change more than even I realized.  I actually think I was at rock bottom when it came to work.  I didn't enjoy going anymore and, although I still loved my students, my overall happiness in life was really suffering.  I don't think even I knew how much this change would impact my life.  I love my job!  I smile every day now.  The people I work with are amazing.  They've become some of my best friends.  We laugh more than I ever thought could happen at work.  The best phrase I've got is, "it just felt right" (and it still does).  I may have hit the bottom but I have definitely climbed back up to where I want to be.  

3.  Other issues.  Needless to say, there were other things that led to my depression.  I do think some of it is genetic.  I have had issues with money and using shopping (along with food) as a coping mechanism for all the sadness I felt.  I can honestly say that I finally feel like I have put those issues behind me in the best ways.  There are times I still grab a cookie when I get stressed.  But, more often than not, I can walk away and not eat half a box like I did 2 years ago.  I don't feel the need to go shopping every weekend just to be social.  It used to be my way of interacting with other people.  I never would have admitted that 3 years ago.  

Rock bottom is different for everyone.  For me, it has a lot of different layers.  Who knows, maybe I haven't hit them all yet.  I hope I have but I guess you never know.  Life is full of twists and turns.  I think my point is, don't be afraid of recognizing when you've hit the bottom.  Because, there's no other way to go but up.  And, when you find your way back up, it's one of the greatest feelings in the world.  I speak from experience.

"The best feeling in the world is finally knowing you took a 
step in the right direction.  A step towards the future where everything that you never thought was possible, is possible."