I have never really been good at loving myself. I have always put the needs of others before my own. I have been weak, cowardly, and lifeless, and at times I have hated myself.
About three years ago, when I was at one my lowest points in my life, my mother gave to me, two engraved pendants to wear on a chain. One pendant was engraved with the words, "If the storm won't end, learn to dance in the rain." The other pendant was engraved with the words, "I am strong, beautiful, and fearless." She said to me, "I hope you dance, and do not be afraid to be fearless."
I knew then that I had only two options: to give up or fight like hell. I chose the latter option. I wanted so badly to give up, but I had to have hope for my mom.
I realized that if I was going to continue to play in this game of life, I had to play on my own terms. In other words, I realized that I had to start putting myself first if I ever wanted a chance at survival.
Learning to put myself first is probably the most daunting challenge I have ever faced. I still have days where I feel like I am living an endless nightmare, and feel as if I am being dragged through the depths of hell, but it is not so scary anymore. In a twisted way my pain and suffering has made me a more a beautiful person.
Because of my anxiety and depression, I am slowly, but surely becoming the person I have always dreamed of being. I am still learning how to dance in the rain, but it is easier now that I believe I am strong, beautiful and fearless.