I wrote this post in the second week of the blog. I had no idea the blog would lead to a book and be relevant 11 years later. AND that someone in a Facebook group would ask a question about how this happens. AMAZING.
Here is an oldie but goodie from December 2006. I am posting it in its original form.
Each of us has a clue, somewhere deep inside, of what our life should really look like. Although there may have been a lot of setbacks, there are things we long for and things we think we would be if we were somehow born into another life, with different people, under different circumstances.
When I was a senior in high school I wanted to go onto college but my family did not support that idea. I wasn’t quite sure how to get from where I was to a college degree. Furthermore, I wanted a degree in English to which my adoptive father said was completely stupid. If I wanted to read and write, I should go to the library.
I went out with men who were not only physically abusive, but also verbally degrading. People told me, almost continually, that I wasn’t worth very much. And for a long time I believed it for the most part.
However, deep inside I had a small, very small, burning ember of a belief that I should be educated, successful and happy. Even though I really did not know what that looked that or felt like, part of me thought I was meant to be that.
I had to plow through a lot of unhealthy relationships and situations and leave my marriage before finding that ember and nurturing it.
I had to work through all the abuse I had sustained in my life. My abandonment by my birth mother, the loss of my birth brothers, the fact that I felt alone and misunderstood in the world.
I had to convince myself that just because your birth mother throws you away, that does not make you garbage. Just because nasty people abuse you does not make you worthless.
I had to pull up some kind of courage and belief in myself, to work past all the old messages and to find, in me, a will to believe that I could be anything I wanted to be.
BUT I wanted to be SO many things. I wanted to go to college for English, for Psychology, for Law, for Romance Languages. I wanted to be a therapist, a writer, a lawyer, a real estate agent, a speaker, a teacher. I wanted to travel to Europe and learn a new language, I wanted to learn to paint and take a photography course, I wanted to learn to crochet and make a pie, garden and buy a motorcycle and go on a long distance run. I wanted to see London and Pompeii. I wanted to go to Venice and Rome. I wanted to live in California and then come home to New York City. I wanted to raise my children in a happy and healthy home. I wanted them to be close to me when they grew up and started families of their own. I wanted to rid my life of all the toxic people and situations and one day find a man who would love me unconditionally. I wanted to have a best friend who got me, really got me.
Once I started to think about ALL the things I wanted to do, the list was so long!
I started my list about 17 years ago, 3 years after I left my first marriage. It took me a year or so to really start to make progress on it, but today I have done everything on the list. I have a new list now which includes publishing my book and continuing to motivate people. Today my life is happy and healthy. I have done all that I have set out to do and overcome all the obstacles of my early life. I’ve changed it all.
After I got in touch with who I thought I was meant to be and set out on a course to be that, I became willing to rid my life of anything and anyone who did not support me in my efforts to check off things on the list.
Today I am the person I was meant to be and I keep growing and changing. No matter where you come from, no matter what has happened to you, it IS possible to have a whole new life. Believe in yourself, believe in the possibility of the impossible.
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If a post has a tag PT Article it means that it was once on Psychology Today and I am recreating and re-publishing for the blog…it takes a while. I recognize, by the amount of email I received and the traffic and comments my articles had, that my articles were VERY POPULAR. But I had over 100 articles on Psychology Today that helped everyone. I’m trying to recreate them as fast as I can. They’re ALL coming – eventually….but I did my outline for the articles on my local machine, uploaded to PT and edited them there so I have to recreate the process…it takes a while..but I’m writing as fast as I can!!! Read about the HORRIBLE PT breakup HERE
*Included here because it’s the most popular GPYB post/video over the history of the blog/book etc.