My dearest Sarah, you have been to hell and back. You have fought your way through the mud and the muck, wrapped yourself up tightly through a raging rivers of tears, got knocked off mountains only to jump right back on, and when you found yourself on the jagged, narrow edge, looking down as the dust of death reached up to grab you and pull you down, you made a choice – a choice to live!
Do you realize what that took? How much strength and courage that took? There is something strong inside you, something that even in your darkest moments of self-doubt couldn’t be broken. You didn’t know it was there, how could you when the world and the people you loved stomped on your heart and broke your spirit? But with every hit you took, that strength grew a little. Even through childhood, you always felt so weak but that strength was inside you. It was there, slowly breathing and waiting – waiting for the day when you forgot who you were, for the day when you fell to your knees in sobbing tears that almost suffocated you, for the day when you lost all hope and couldn’t see the light anymore. On that day, the strength that had been hidden but growing all those years fought its way out, filled you, surrounded you, saved you!
I know you don’t know where your strength came from. I know you wish you did so you could explain it to others and help them jump back from their own jagged edge. Don’t you know that it is in everyone? It is there, just waiting to break free. It’s only a matter of whether or not people can see it and be willing to let it come out. Everyone gets so wrapped up in the pain that they don’t see that they have more strength, more power than they realize.
You found your power when you said, “Enough!”. You found your strength when you decided to step back from the edge, when you decided that you wouldn’t let them break you, that you would rise from the ashes, defy their beliefs of who you are, that you would stand up and shout, “I matter!” Don’t you see – you have spent too much time letting others dictate how you feel about yourself. It was only when you took that away from them that you truly started to come back to life.
It won’t always be easy – the road is a constant journey and it will be filled with bumps and bruises, but at least it will be on your own terms. You will find good people to add to your life, the ones who accept you for who you are and not for who they want you to be. But you have to crawl out of your socially-phobic shell and put yourself out there. You are a genuine soul and you deserve to be who you are. Try to remember that the takers and fakers are not deserving of you. They are usually wrapped up in their own drama and you don’t need that. Life is too short and you deserve to be around those who make you feel good about yourself, around those who are positive and real. This whole time, your life has been in your own hands – you just had to realize it, accept it, make changes and move forward.
Keep trying to reach out to others, Sarah. You have always felt the calling to help others, to inspire others, to let them know they are not alone. Even if it doesn’t feel like it sometimes, sharing your story, your experiences, even if it only helps one person, it will be worth it. Allow yourself to be a little bit of light in this world. Let yourself fly. For as you do, that strength will continue to grow.
© Sarah Waters 2016
Author’s Note: In “Letter To Myself”, I address life-long insecurity, anxiety and healing. I have never been officially diagnosed with it, but it has seemed pretty clear to me, with everything I have learned, that I have suffered most of my life with CPTSD from childhood abuse.
Read Sarah’s previous contribution:
Visit her Blog: Breaking Sarah
The wonderful photograph was taken by Cam Adams and acquired through Unsplash. It’s a great source for free photos under the Creative Commons Zero license, so check it out!