I ran across this 10-day challenge on Pinterest. Essentially, you’re supposed to post something for 10 days to reveal things about yourself, including the following:
10 hard things, 9 loves, 8 fears, 7 wants, 6 places, 5 foods, 4 books, 3 films, 2 songs, 1 picture of yourself
I thought this would be interesting and would allow me to do a bit of self exploration, so here goes for Day 1!
These are not in any sort of order from least hard to most hard. These are just 10 hard things that I’ve experienced in my lifetime.
1. Saying goodbye to my mother-in-law, knowing that it was going to be the last time I would see her alive. She was dying from cancer, and lived in another state. My husband and I had to return home and we knew that the next time we came to see her would be for her funeral. It was one of the saddest moments of my life.
2. When I was in my mid-20’s, a man broke into my apartment in the middle of the night and tried to sexually assault me. He was armed with a hammer and was trying to beat me on the head with it. He was naked from the waist down. I fought him off and it turned out to be the neighbor from upstairs. He was strung out on drugs and alcohol. Luckily, I was able to talk him into leaving the apartment before anything else happened, but I suffered post-traumatic stress disorder and had to go through therapy and medication from the event. I also had to go to court and testify on a witness stand during this guy’s sentencing hearing. That was tough.
3. Making the decision to put two of our dogs down due to health issues is something that still haunts and grieves me to this very day. The first time was our little dog, Mikey, who was 19 years old. He was euthanized as I held him in my arms. The other dog was the sweetest dog we’ve ever known, Annie. She was only 6 when she was diagnosed with lung cancer. By the time she was diagnosed, it was too late to treat her (I still beat myself up about this – could we have done more?) and my husband and I decided to end her suffering. It’s one of the few times I’ve seen my husband cry. It’s not easy making the decision to end a life, even when you know you’re doing the right thing.
4. Deciding to end the toxic, unhealthy relationship I was having with my mom two years ago was really, really hard. We have not spoken since then, although I felt like I left the door open for her to reach out to me, that I tried to make it understood that I was willing to work on our relationship. Working on a relationship takes two people, though, not just one. I just couldn’t put up with the crap anymore. Through therapy due to the situation in #2, I learned that I was mentally and emotionally abused by my mom growing up, but I chose to forgive her and to continue to try to have a relationship with her. However, she never changed and I realized that I didn’t need to endure it any longer. It was hard and I know a lot of people don’t understand, but I’m in a better place now and a huge burden has been lifted.
5. Changing jobs after being at the same job for 11 years was scary and hard. What if I didn’t like my new job? What if I didn’t like the people I had to work with? I HATED my old job. Every day, I woke up with a feeling of dread that I had to go to work and face the day. I suffered from stress-related illness. I was so unhappy. But I loved the people that I worked with. They were like family to me. How could I leave them? How could I say goodbye? I finally decided to take the plunge and apply for another job that sounded interesting and was completely different than what I was currently doing. I got the job, but then I had to tell the people I loved that I was leaving. That was incredibly hard. Although I love the people I work with now, I miss the people from my old job very much. I don’t regret leaving, though. The stress is gone. I wake up each day and feel good about going to work.
6. Running my first mile was hard. Running that first mile is still hard, but when I first started running, it was really, really hard. I didn’t think I would be able to do it. Now, I LOVE it, but it’s still hard. Every time I decide to run more miles, it’s hard. I think that’s why I love running, though. It has taught me to be tough and face through challenges and not give up.
7. My first running injury was hard. Since I started running, I’ve had 3 stress fractures. When I got the first fracture, it was 3 or 4 months before I was able to start running again. I actually got depressed. Not being able to run (or do any kind of exercise at all) was HARD. It made me realize, though, just how much I love running and how much I love being active.
8. Telling my family that I wanted to go vegan was really hard. I was worried how they would react. I think they were surprised and worried about how healthy I would be if I gave up all animal products, but now they are my biggest supporters and cheerleaders. They haven’t joined me yet, but they are willing to try any vegan recipe I set in front of them, and they actually like most of the food I cook!
9. We moved around a lot when I was a kid. For a while, I went to a new school every year. Moving in the middle of my sophomore year to a completely new school was the most difficult. I had finally settled down at one school and was there for about 5 years and then guess what? It was time to move again. Sure, I made friends at the new school. In fact, one of those friends is the godmother to our kids. And I survived and graduated. But I vowed that when I had kids, I would not make them move; that they would be able to go to the same school growing up. And they did.
10. Coming up with a 10th hard thing. Hmmmmm…. Yes, I’ve had to go through some hard things. There are so many people who have had to go through much harder things, though. When I look back at my life and what my life is like now, I can only feel happy and blessed. I have a wonderful husband and two beautiful daughters, I’m healthy, my family is healthy, I have lots of good friends, and a job that I like. Life can be hard sometimes, but somehow, I’ve gotten through the hard times. I’ve become stronger. I’m more grateful. Maybe there have been other hard things that I’ve chosen to just forget about, but who wants to dwell on that? Not me!
I’m looking forward to getting to list 9 loves. That might be a hard challenge, though! There are probably 90 things that I love – I can only list 9? 🙂