Sometimes the past holds you down.
It grabs you tight and won't let go. I feel such a weight on my shoulders, hands wrapped around my neck, pulling me down, crushing me.
I found a letter today. I don't know why I saved it.
The infamous "You are a bitch" letter from high school.
I've never been one to let go. I still hold grudges from events years a go. I don't mean to, I want to let go, oh how I want to let go, I just don't. Or can't. Or won't. Or whatever.
So this weighs on me some more. Hurts my heart and crushes my soul.
I had such lofty ambitions for myself. All I wanted to do was go to Harvard and become a doctor.
Then life happened. Life happened hard. And it hurt, it wasn't easy, and I froze. I was literally stuck where I was and could not move forward.
So I never did what I wanted to do. I just existed, trying to figure out my next step, another path, leaving behind every friendship I had made. I couldn't be a friend because I was so stuck inside myself.
I feel like I've moved on from that time of my life in some ways, and not at all in others. I'm happy again. I'm in a good place in my relationships, and growing my friendships again. I still am rusty, but I'm working on it.
I am just still so disappointed in myself. I feel like I let myself down.
I let other people tell me that is the case.
I ran into a kid I went to high school with a few years back, and he was disgusted with me. How I looked, how I had changed majors, how I hadn't stuck with my plans. It shook me to my core.
I let go again. I felt worthless and broken and lost.
Had it not been for my fiance-turned-husband, I'm not sure what I would have done. He believed in me above all else.
Because of that, I moved on. We got married, started a family, and now have three beautiful, amazing children. I no longer feel like a failure.
I may not have chosen the path that was laid out before me, or the path I had boasted was the right one for me, but I forged my way. I found a path that excites me and thrills me and fits me perfectly.
So now I'm a college student again, and though I still struggle sometimes with feeling like I've failed, it's an easier bounce back to reality than it used to be.
Harvard would have been nice, but there are plenty of good schools out there. I don't WANT to be a doctor. It's not in my heart anymore.
The time has come to allow myself to embrace the path I've taken, the path that picked me, that fits me and completes me like nothing ever has. I know what I'm doing and where I'm going, and for once, finally, that is enough.
Though I may always struggle with the letting go, I feel like I'm moving forward. Slowly but surely. Learning from the past, knowing and acknowledging in myself that a change in paths does not constitute a failure in life, and understanding that others' opinions of me do not make or break me.
I know me, I love me, and I am embracing me and my potential and my gifts and what I can offer to the world. For the first time in a really long time, I am glad to be me.