A lot to be thankful for

This past weekend was Thanksgiving, and I have so much to be thankful for. Holidays can be tough for people like me. The constant travel and socializing can be exhausting.  But I got to spend the weekend with those I love the most. A wonderful family lunch Saturday and then off my sister and I went to spend 3.5 hours at the rink, coaching. Sunday, was a full Thanksgiving turkey dinner at one of my most favourite places with more family. The weather could have been better but hey, I’ll take it. Sunday night I laughed like I haven’t laughed in a while. It was so refreshing and for a night I got to forget about everything else going on.

These last couple of weeks have been difficult. Life handed me some pretty devastating news that rocked my world. It made me angry, heartbroken, numb and I found myself in constant state of asking why. It’s a day I’ll never forget and piece of my heart that will never be unbroken. 

Also, over the past couple of weeks I’ve had unbelievable conversations with family and friends. About what it’s like to live with a mental illness, either personally or witnessing first hand someone they love go through it. It’s so refreshing to me to be able to have these conversations and not feel like I have to constantly explain myself or be afraid to be vulnerable. To know that they understand and want to understand. To know that I can be honest with them about my struggles and triumphs. I’m at a place now where I can openly talk about a scary night I had two years ago, when I found myself sitting in my car because I couldn’t bring myself to go in and be with family. It was that moment of listening to the rain hit the windshield that I knew, I needed help. It was time for me to look after myself. These conversations, mean the world to me. It’s one of the greatest feelings and I wish everyone got to experience it more often. We should be at a place in time, where these vulnerable and difficult conversations CAN happen on a regular basis. There is nothing I love more than a 2:00 a.m. heart to heart conversation. 

School… I love it. I know it’s exactly where I need to be. Every struggle, every time I wanted to quit but pushed through, has led me right here. It’s taken me a while to get back into the groove of things but damn, am I ever excited for what the future holds. Terrified but also excited. There are days where I’m walking on campus and I think to myself “Damn right, I’m here”. 

26 years old… and I believe in myself…finally. It’s such a beautiful thing. Please don’t think that I’ve all of a sudden cured myself, I promise you my anxiety and depression are both still there. I’m just better equipped to handle them when they get too overwhelming. Yes, I still have bad days. Last week for an example, I’m driving and I’m desperately trying to hold it together. Concentrating so hard on just getting my sister and I where we needed to go. We pulled in the parking lot and she looked at me and said “Hil, what’s wrong?” ……. and the flood gates opened. So many tears and I started hyperventilating. It took me a minute or two but I calmed down enough to tell her what was wrong. So to the people out there that think that just because I have a few good days doesn’t mean I’m allowed to have a bad one or vice versa, I wish you could have my brain and my thoughts for a couple of days. Then you would see the constant battle, that is a new one every day.

So, I’m thankful for a lot.

Thankful for my journey so far. 

Thankful for what is yet to come. 

And thankful, for my life.

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