Another journey on my road to self-discovery: Self-Worth.
I envisioned my time to Virginia to be completely relaxing, and to learn how to just – be. Literally to just be. But what I realized is I naturally keep myself busy. I cannot spend days doing nothing. Whether I fill my days helping others, working on wedding planning, or getting on a bike and spending my days outside – it is just not in my nature to spend all of my time (or most of my time) doing nothing. But to have the time in my life right now to really see that this is just who I am as a person, rather than being forced in my life to be busy, is really blissful.
But this is definitely a two-fold (three-fold, four-fold?) story. My trip, which again, I envisioned to be completely relaxing, was met with a lot of angst as well.
- Am I a good enough social worker to find another job?
- Am I choosing the right path for myself in my career?
- Licensing? No licensing? Part time? Full time?
- Will the money be enough to last until I find a job? Money management. Don’t buy this. Save your money for that. What will happen at Christmas? Can we afford a trip at the holidays?
- What happens when I no longer have health insurance?
This list goes on and on… I had a constant internal struggle with feeling like I don’t have a purpose, yet also feeling OK with having this time to reflect. I do so much volunteer work in the community, how can I not feel fulfilled? While I was gone, I also joined our Fairbanks Cycling Club Board of Directors because there are visions I have for our cycling community. I am no stranger to giving back and loving my community wholeheartedly. So the time here to reflect goes on and on as you can see from my rambling. But what I didn’t anticipate was probably what hit the most…
The feeling that I am not good enough to those I love. The obvious looks that say more than words ever could: “why are you here when you are unemployed?” Feeling the cold shoulder, feeling the failure of losing my job – as if I have not met the expectations of what I should be.
Then there was this: the discovery of my SELF-WORTH. I have met and exceeded every expectation I ever set for myself. I have broken the cycle of poverty and violence that maternally preceeded me. I am not the statistic and I am no one else but me. I am not here to make anyone else happy. I am here to make me happy.
I moved to Alaska 4 years and 7 months ago. Four years and 1 month ago the love of my life, my soon-to-be husband, walked into my life. It was a moment that set into motion what would be become a future in Alaska, a forever life in Alaska. One I don’t regret and one I am not sorry for. Not to my friends, not to my family. I left home for adventure, and what I found was home. I found myself, I found my soul wandering around waiting for me, I found the love of my life, my best friend.
I recently read a post called 26 Ways to Take Your Life Back When You’re Broken and it is well worth the read. Every bit of it. There are a few that especially spoke to me in this regard (although they all very much spoke to me):
- #3: Rewrite your story. The past is our story that we repeat to ourselves, and it is an opportunity for growth. We are not bound to these experiences and should not let them hold us back, but instead let them release us.
- #5: Share your story. This one is especially important to me. Starting to acknowledge the feelings of my story, and who I am and what has molded me or has not molded me is important. It is truly liberating to begin to release instead of repress this.
- #13: Strengthen relationships with the people who love you. There are people that love you because they have to, and people that love you because they want to. When life has chosen to give you tough moments to get through, its in those times that you will find the people you can lean on. So you lost your job? Who has called to check on you?
- #17: Establish a health source of validation. This one is tough, and there maybe a moment when you find that your source of validation is not what you thought it was, or should be. Find a new one. You do not need the approval, so seek those you want it from that can both help you in the tough times, help you discover your strengths and continue to grow personally and professionally. See #13 for help.
- #25: Look at how far you’ve come. I can’t begin to describe who I once was, and this is how far I’ve come. Don’t forget that for you. For You.
Remember you are worth it. Do things that make you happy. Set goals and expectations for yourself and no one else.