"As long as we have our inspiration, we can get ourselves out of dark places and get to where there is light...The next step is to heal, and regroup, and rejuvenate, and get that inspiration to move forward."
-Michelle Lesniak Franklin from Project Runway, Season 11
I relate strongly to these words. I had never faced adversity until my senior spring of college. I was heartbroken, unemployed, and moved back home with my parents after graduation; all three were huge disappointments for me. The summer after graduation, I finally understood what depression was. I had friends who had gone through depression, and before this, I had always thought, "Why don't they just get over it? Move on a be happy!" But that is so much easier said than done. I probably cried almost every day that summer, wishing I would fall asleep and never wake up so my heart wouldn't hurt anymore, so I wouldn't bring shame to my family. Things got slightly better when I moved to New York City for a change in scenery. I started dating again, and even though I was still living with family (my grandma lives in Queens), being in a city felt like I was moving forward with my life somehow. But I still had times when I prayed so hard for God to answer my prayers and allow me to get a job so I would have something to work on again.
And I eventually did! Then I had to go through that healing process of pulling myself back together again. My confidence had been so shattered completely that I had to find myself; it was an odd feeling for someone who had walked the straight-and-narrow path for so long. But by surrounding myself with people I love (and who love me), focusing on my body (exercising ~5 days a week and practicing yoga) and mind (LOTS of self-reflection and prayer), and focusing on my professional work like I did my schoolwork in the past, I now am in a much better place. Yes, there are still days that I wonder if there will ever be a day that I don't think about the men who have hurt me. Yes, there are times that I think, "Is this what I'm meant to be doing with my life?" or "Where am I going next?" But all in all, I feel like I'm back on track. I have a great job, I'm living in a cool city, I'm having fun both when I'm with friends and when I'm on my own...I really could not ask for anything more.
As long as you have something out there that is bigger than yourself to push you through your hard times, you will smile again. This could be your family, friends, faith, job, anything that inspires you to keep going because you know there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. You can get through it. And you will be stronger because of it.
Stay tuned for more blog posts with quotes from this one episode of Project Runway (Season 11, Episode 12). A lot of them touched me, or somehow made an impact on me. So my next few posts will have some sort of recurring theme!