A new year means a fresh start! And I’m ready. Time to wipe the slate clean and start anew. I’m tired of dragging these shackles around that have been weighing me down and I know that it’s up to me, and only me, to break free from them. Maybe if I put it in writing I’ll look back on this post when I’m feeling discouraged or down and remember my promise to myself. This is my year to move forward. No more standing still or going backwards in my recovery. It’s up to me to choose my destiny and I’m going to start making wiser decisions for myself. I have to. And I have the power, the courage and the strength to make those choices. Life isn’t going to run me anymore. Things aren’t going to happen to me – I’m going to make things happen.
My main priority is going to be focusing on improving my health and wellbeing. That will mean learning to put myself first and that’s not something I’m familiar or comfortable doing. However, I’ve come to the realization that in order for me to be healthy, I need to show myself the love and compassion that I so willingly give to others first. I need to nurture the soul within, so that I can continue to love the others in my life. For too long, I’ve neglected myself and I feel empty and lost. Too often, I’d look for others to fill that void in myself, not understanding that I could be the one doing that. It’s not selfish to love yourself, and even if it, selfish isn’t a bad word.
Next in my list of things to do is to focus on improving the relationships in my life. I’ve come to learn that it’s the people that I share my life with that matter – my husband, my friends, my family and all of the online world that I am connected to. Material things don’t matter to me – relationships do. Memories and experiences and sharing laughter and tears can’t be replaced. Some of my relationships have been one-sided due to a lack of boundaries on my part and it’s been difficult as I learn to set boundaries. These relationships are going through painful transitions, but I’m determined to remain true to who I am as a person and not waiver from my own values and principles. My hope for the upcoming year is that there will be some resolution to these relationships and healing.
And then there’s continuing to find my purpose. What inspires me? I’m continuing my work with my local peer support group for people living with mental illness and I’ve watched it grow from just a friend and myself to almost 200 people in just a few short months. I am making a difference in the lives of people and it feels good. I have big dreams for my organization. I hope to one day have an office of my own where we will help people from the time they are first diagnosed with a mental illness through their journey so they never have to feel alone …..and spread this message of support and healing throughout the world. I envision a place where we take care of each other as we make our way through the maze of mental illness.
I want to write a book. A fictional story about living with mental illness. Something that people will be drawn to and relate to and understand. Hell, maybe even have the book turned into a movie because it’s THAT relatable. Of course much of the book would be based on a lot of my own experiences – I always said I could write a book about many of my escapades!
I want to be a public speaker and raise awareness about living with mental illness. I want to show the world that we are amazing people. We have dreams and hopes and passions and we overcome so many obstacles every single day that we are some of the strongest people they will ever meet!!
So here’s to a New Year. Surrounding myself with loving people and chasing my dreams. Thank you all for being a part of my journey.