Not all those who wander are lost. – J.R.R. Tolkien
What you need to know before you read this is, I am sat in front of my laptop, clicking the keys to type this, with tears of joy streaming down my face. And stuffing my face with chocolate raisins. And I should be revising, or sleeping, or relaxing. I’ve an exam tomorrow.
Between the facade of being a “blogger” is me. Just an 18 year old girl who has both good and bad things happen to her; a girl who has both caused good and bad things to happen. But ultimately, a girl who finally knows who she is and who she is to become.
Despite (probably) coming across all happy and cheery and like my life is sooo good, I am not always like that. I have depressive moments where all I do is sit and overthink and cry and comfort eat and worry and cry some more. I have experienced many a time being metaphorically dragged to the edge of a cliff and been told to jump off. But never have I. Never have I let the demons in my life get me so low that I have given in. And I hope no one reading ever finds the need to give in, because there is simply no need. Speak to someone (YOU CAN ALWAYS TURN TO ME); mental health is not a private matter anymore. Don’t post it all over Facebook that you’re losing yourself, instead, message those you can go to for help. Go to see a doctor. Seek out God, if you have faith (a faith of any kind). And even if you don’t believe in a God, have a general faith in yourself.
Today I checked my mail and found I had received an envelope. Eager and curious, I couldn’t wait till I got back into my flat to open it, so I sat in the mail room and opened it. As soon as I saw it was from my friend, Suzanne, I was filled with so much joy. I read the little note and tears formed. One thing she had said had tipped me over the edge:
You are an inspiration to so many young women.
If anyone has ever told you that you inspire them, or other people, then you will understand how this has made me feel. Especially as I live my life for me (and for Jesus), not for other people. I don’t post on Instagram because I know people will “like” my photo. I post because I want to post. I have become very strong and resilient, very quickly. I have learnt I should only be pleasing myself and my God, pleasing other people are just bonuses that happen along the way. So, to be told I inspire people is like being blessed with the knowledge that I have an impact on people, no matter what that impact may be.
I’ve never gone through a “major” hardship in my life. The bad things that have happened, I have caused whether through fault of my own or not. I struggle to help and advise people with bigger problems than my own, but I try to use my strength to still reach out to them. I am not perfect, I cannot snap my fingers and turn into a saviour. At times, I can’t even pick myself back up. And without preaching to exclude those of you who don’t identify as Christian, don’t have a faith or are of other faiths, I would not be the person I am if it hadn’t been for Jesus. And I have no shame in publicly declaring my faith, my belief and the love I have for my God. Looking back on my life, I have never not been solid in my belief. Okay so I have wavered, it’s hard being a teenager and having people call you a “bible basher” because you went to a church school – ALTHOUGH I ONLY EVER TOUCHED A BIBLE WHILE IN SCHOOL IN R.E LESSONS AND WE DIDN’T SPEND EVERY WAKING SECOND PRAISING GOD. School is a place that facilitates growth, and oh how I grew. Just not in height. Like ever. I’m probably the same height I was in year 9.
I will discuss what happened at Cherish Conference in another post as this is becoming a very long testimony. But, while there, I had three women who I look up to so much, tell me that they are proud of me for stepping out at 18 and declaring that I’m a Christian and always being so public about it, especially while at university. That’s when I realised my potential; and realised that no matter what comes my way in life and the mistakes I am bound to make keep coming, I have Jesus and He is above all of it.
While writing this post, a friend, Laura, commented on a Facebook post saying:
You’re beautiful, gifted, anointed, talented and chosen to be you and chosen to make a difference by being you.
I cannot tell you what these words mean to me. How cherished and loved and blessed I feel to be told something so lovely. Lifting others up is something we should all do regardless of being Christian or not. We need to see who people are going to become, not see them solely for who they are. It’s flipping well difficult to forgive, but when (as I believe) you are already forgiven before you’ve even sinned to any level, you realise that holding grudges, holding back with your kindness, are not the way happiness and friendships.
I think I’m going to stop preaching here now.
I am so blessed, you are so blessed. Things of this world need changing, people need impacting and blessing and praying for. We can achieve all of that if we do it together.
THE BIGGEST LOVING SIGN OFF IN THE HISTORY OF KULAYROSAS,