Give it a Year: So Much Can Change.

Are you struggling right now? Does it seem like nothing is going your way? Well, I’ve been there. I’m sure we all have. When you are dealing with the world crumbling around you, it is hard to see the light. We feel like there is no way things will get better, but they will. Every time I felt lost or down, my mother would always say, “this too shall pass.” And even though I never believed it, it did pass. When we are bogged down in the storms of life, we forget about the rainbows at the end. Now as I look back on the hard years I have had, I try to remind myself that if things are tough, I need to just give it a year and everything will change.

When I returned from my trip to Australia and SE Asia with my sister, I struggled to find a job. It took 10 months for me to get back on my feet. I felt so defeated. Even when I got a waitressing job, I cried every day on the way to work. I worked so hard to get my Masters degree and here I was waiting tables at a retirement home. I felt like a failure. I couldn’t see through the fog to know that good things were coming my way. That Christmas, I went home with very little to report to my family. I got the normal barrage of questions about what I was up to in Portland. Am I dating? Did I find a good job? Was I happy? Unfortunately, my answer to all their questions was no. I was ready to throw in the towel and just move home to Philly. Then my mom said to me, “Melissa, you are not a quitter! You are going to find your way out there.”

So, I sat down and told myself, Melissa, you need to give it one more year. This year will be the Year of Melissa and all the things you’ve been wanting will come true. I returned to Portland, ready to take on life and be open to the unexpected. Within a month, I finally landed a job at a nonprofit as the Volunteer and Development Coordinator. I met a guy and we started dating. Things seemed to finally be going my way. Of course, as soon as you get comfortable again that is when the Universe says, “nope, I’m not going to make it that easy on you.” So, by April my boyfriend dumped me. I was devastated. I thought this was the Year of Melissa. How could this happen? Everything is supposed to finally go my way. Little did I know, it still was.

I took the next 7 months to really reevaluate my dating life and myself. I decided to not have a rebound and not date for a while. I started dating myself. It was tough, but I learned to really listen to my heart and love myself again. I took myself on dates to concerts, the park for a picnic, to the beach. I enjoyed my own company for once. I stopped searching. My career was taking off and I was promoted to full time with benefits. I realized that a year ago, I was unemployed and miserable. I thought things would never get better, but it did.

In October, I finally got back into dating and I met Ethan. We hit it off immediately. The next 8 months flew by. We went on adventures together all over Oregon. We enjoyed live concerts and shared our favorite bands with each other. I thought to myself, this is why it didn’t work out with the last guy. He wasn’t the one. When we are in the thick of it, we don’t realize that the Universe knows what is meant to be. We are blinded by our desires to control everything and we miss out on the big picture. Now a year later, I am engaged to the love of my life. When he proposed to me on the 4th of July, 2016 I realized that a year ago I was depressed and clinging on to a broken relationship that wouldn’t last. Now, here I am happier than ever and ready to share the rest of my life with my soulmate.

Everything happens for a reason. We must go through those hard times to get to the good times on the other end. We must learn from our mistakes and hardships. If I hadn’t of dated Steve, and been dumped, I would have never finally took the time to find myself. I wouldn’t have taken a step back and realized I was doing it all wrong and I needed to love myself first. If I hadn’t been unemployed for so long, I maybe wouldn’t have taken that part-time job at the Sunshine Division. Here I am fully employed and completely in love, and all it took was a matter of a year and some patience.

If you are really struggling right now, think back on the good things that have happened in your life. They didn’t happen inside of a vacuum. You most likely had some hardship before the good things happened. Remind yourself that so much can happen in a year. We never know what the plan is for our lives and we have to just be patient. Try to remember what my mom always said, “this too shall pass!” It will pass. As the Buddhist’s believe, everything in life is temporary. This storm will pass and your rainbow will appear. Just wait a year and see how much life can change.

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