“When I was a kid, I hid my heart under the bed, because my mother told said, ‘If you’re not careful, someday someone’s going to break it.’ Take it from me under the bed is not a good hiding spot. I know because I have been shot down so many times I get altitude sickness just from standing up for myself.” – Shane Koyczan
Growing up is hard. Being an adolescent stepping your first day into high school is hard. Going through puberty is hard. Being passionate and showing you’re interested in things, is hard. Adulthood is hard. We are not handed anything in this life, it never gets easier – you just become accustomed to how you work, how you ru. Like a machine you become attuned to what will help you succeed. But also like a machine, you break down; you get broken down by the things and people around you, sometimes on a daily basis. It is not always easy getting back up, it is not always easy staring hatred in the face. It will make you stronger, or so they say…
In this life there are many obstacles that we must face and so many of them come at an early age. Hell, I saw them first hand myself as soon as I hit the age of 10. And by age 13 I was already in my own head and telling myself how unworthy I was because that is what everyone else was saying. I got called names and thrown into lockers. I drank too much and didn’t care. I lost my own self respect, only to begin finding it again at the age of 23. I let myself loose who I wanted to become all because friendships don’t last and neither do relationships. Did I tell myself it would get easier? Sure, has it? Not entirely, but I get by.
You are told that you have choices to make and a strict time limit to make them. When you make a choice, a choice that was once your dream, it gets shot down.
You can’t be this when you grow up because you will not make a decent living to get yourself by.
Don’t be silly, that is not a real career.
That university is not as good as this one, but you don’t have the grades so you will have to settle.
You dropped out of university, great, now where is your life headed?
You are almost 30 and you still don’t have a proper career or a family, what have you been doing this entire time?
The pushing down of your character, of who you truly are and want to be doesn’t stop after high school and it definitely doesn’t get easier. There are always going to be things in this world that thrives on pushing you down and watching you suffer. But there are also those things, those few shining rays of light, that will be there for you when you need them to tell you that: you are kind, you are unique, you are worthy, you are enough.There are those people who will keep a close watch on you when you are down and give you the space, but not enough space to let you get too stuck in your own mind. There are those people, they are with you every day.
Your dreams, the dreams you hold in your heart that very few people know about… yeah, those, the ones that would get dismissed if you made them public. The ones that even though they may be unrealistic in this world we are living in, the ones that set your heart on fire. Those dreams, they are worthy of going for. Strive to be what you want to be, strive to make your own life a little easier even if people are willing to set all over it. You have to put you first in this life or you will always be settling for something someone else wants for you. Your dreams should not be dismissed, your dreams are your own and they are just as beautiful as you are.
Because like you, your dreams will get called out. They will get called names, like you. They will get put in a timeout, like you. They will get pushed aside, like you. But that doesn’t mean you have to stop. It doesn’t mean you can’t keep going. Because you can and so can your dreams. You have to keep dreaming, you just have to. Your dreams and the things you love will always be there, they will always come back to you when you least expect it because the greatest things in our lives: mine and yours, are the things that come unexpectedly.
Now, go. Watch this beautiful TedTalk. If you remember anything from it, remember these words:
“I will love myself despite the ease with which I lean toward the opposite.”
‘We grew up cheering for the underdog because we saw ourselves in them. We stem from a root planted in the belief that we are not what we were called. We are not abandoned cars stalled out and sitting empty on some highway, and if in some way we are, don’t worry. We only got out to walk and get gas. We are graduating members from the class of We Made It, not the faded echoes of voices crying out, ‘Names will never hurt me.’ Of course, they did. But our lives will only ever always continue to be a balancing act that has less to do with pain and more to do with beauty.”