Updated June 2020

Life can be so frustrating. Just when you think that things are looking good, something will go wrong. But I’ve learned to view life just as we view the weather – always changing.

I initially wrote this post in 2019, before I was faced with my health issues, and before we got caught up living the Covid 19 lifestyle. I will tell you more about my health diagnosis in my next post. But for now, I want to focus on what I thought were bad things happening to me.

It’s a crazy time to be alive

This past month has been an interesting one for me. A few weeks ago, I fell and hurt my leg. I think I officially reached my height of clumsiness (who falls into a hole…except me) I wasn’t able to stand or walk so the doctor booked me off work. A week later my phone was stolen. I want to say…story of my life…but in reality, this is not the story of my life.

Just as good things happen, bad things also happen to people. How you choose to deal with the situation is what will make a difference. Will you sit around and feel sorry for yourself, or will you dust yourself off, create solutions and try again?

Seriously…falling into a hole?

Yes, and it was stupid but, when I hurt my leg, it was a crucial week at work – mandatory meetings that I had to attend and other important stuff that needed my attention.

I usually work from home but during this week, I needed to be at the office. Since I couldn’t walk or drive, I worked from home and managed my meetings via virtual meetings.

I still had to get the work done, and couldn’t afford to sit around feeling sorry for myself. I figured that feeling bad for myself will not change my situation so I got on with life.

I think my strength comes from not have the privilege of relying on anyone. I had nobody around to feel sorry for me, and I would never want anyone to feel sorry for me.

I don’t know if its wrong to feel insulted when sympathy is shown towards you. I appreciate empathy or understanding but never sympathy. We are not victims; we are fighters.

It wasn’t the end of the world, I saw a doctor and got on with life, one leg at a time.

Urgh…then they stole my phone

Just as I was mobile again, I went to a music festival with my friends. People who live in South Africa, know how bad crime is here. Within a second, my bag was opened and my phone was stolen at this festival.

I didn’t care about the device itself being taken; my concern was about all the information I had on that phone. Especially pictures from my travels that I didn’t back-up to my computer.

I could have cried and complained about all the bad things that were happening to me. I could have blamed the world for hating me, but shit happens. I try my best to deal with a situation and move on.

So, I got home from the festival and changed all my passwords, canceled all my bank cards, got a new phone and tried to logout of my many apps. I didn’t realize how many apps I use until I downloaded at least 40 different apps on my new device.

Since updating this article, the app number has gone up to too many to count.

But I am still smiling

My misfortunes happened in a space of two or three weeks.

These past few weeks made me realize that bad stuff happens all the time, whether we deserve it or not. I don’t think that anyone deserves bad things to happen to them.

Let’s not forget that good stuff happens too, but it’s still human nature to focus on the negative and take the positive for granted.

Does feeling sorry for yourself change anything?

I think what matters is how we deal with negative situations and turn them around to work for us. When I hurt my leg, I think those that were with me felt bad for me but the injury didn’t faze me.

Feeling sad for myself was not going to take me back in time or change the situation. Feeling bad for myself would have only stolen my present moment. Focusing on something we can’t change is the worst thing we can do to ourselves.

When I lost my phone, I told my friend that I didn’t care about it being stolen. The reply I got was that “I must be rich to not care about my phone”.

Honestly, I don’t place much importance on material things. Whether it’s a phone, clothes or a car. Crying over my phone wasn’t going to bring it back anyway.

I’ve changed

If these things happened to me 10 years ago, I would have never been able to get a new device the next day.

 I would have not been able to work from home or drive by myself even though I could barely walk or stand up.

It took me years to get the strength I have today. It was a long, hard struggle. But here I am!

It may come across as self-centered, but after battling years of abuse, depression, and dependency, I couldn’t be happier with the person I am becoming.

Some days it’s a struggle, some days the anxiety gets too much. Other days are better, other days I wake up as the happiest version of myself.

It may sound as if I am bipolar but I’m not. I am fighting to live happily, even on my darkest days.

And I am still grateful

I am so grateful that I taught myself how to not depend on ANYONE today. I am so grateful to everyone who turned me down or criticized me so that I could learn how to handle situations on my own.

You don’t notice how much you’ve changed

You might feel like you are living the same life as a year ago, but I challenge you to write down something about yourself and keep that writing away for just one year. It can be short writing, even a few sentences.

When you read this writing a year from now, you will notice how much you’ve changed. You will think about what you placed importance on now versus what is important in a year.

You will have grown as a person and as you grow, your thoughts and actions change. Your priorities also change.

You got this – with or without them

If you need help from people, and those people are not there for you, it’s okay. Those people are teaching you to rely on your own strength that you didn’t know existed. What may seem like a curse now, will be a blessing soon enough!

You just need to believe in yourself, even when the whole world is against you. Let them criticize or ridicule you.

Don’t pay attention to them. Never stop believing that you are capable of achieving all the things you dream about. Everything starts with taking the first step towards what sets your soul on fire.