How did I overcome the roadblocks that were standing in my way?
First, I had to prove that I couldn’t be defined by the way people saw me. That I was truly more than met the eye.
Next, I had to learn not to carry the hurt and pain from my childhood into my adult relationships. And that had a major impact on my life.
Learning to love myself and to define myself - even in the midst of other people’s assumptions - was one of the hardest things I ever accomplished.
I made up my mind that I would not identify with negative words. Whenever I found a flaw or shortcoming, I learned to see it - not as something to be upset about - but as an opportunity to grow, and as an area I personally needed to work on over time.
And finally, I learned that it’s okay to fail; but important not to give up in the midst of battle.
Were these lessons hard to learn? Of course. My hardest days were filled with tears, anxiety, and regret. There were so many moments where I felt like, if I had gone right instead of left, then things would have been so much different.
The Light Inside Me
Did I want to give up? Did I question my faith? Did I wonder if God was listening? The answer is... yes. In the darkest moments of my life, I struggled to hold on to the little light inside of me that said, “this too shall pass”.
At the end of the day, my faith was all I had to lean on. And then, things began to turn around for the better. I realized I had laid the groundwork for change, and was finally prepared for the life I was praying for, and more.
Summary of Parts II and III: In part one of this series, Minolta shares some of the challenges she faced on her journey to self-acceptance, and in part three she shares her secret for winning life's battles.