Saturday, November 26, 2011

Lessons Learned

Lately I've been thinking about different things that have happened throughout my life, both good and bad. I've always had the mindset that something good comes out of a bad situation, you should always learn a lesson when you make a mistake, and pick yourself up even when things knock you down. And while yes, when I get knocked down with a hard blow it takes me a little while to get back up, I always do it. Being alive today is a testament to that.

I may be only 20, but I've had some pretty monumental things happen in my past that taught me some pretty important lessons. Some of these lessons may apply to you or someone you know, or hell, this could just be a list of things you shouldn't do in the future, but I figure why not impart some of my hard earned wisdom (that was indeed a little sarcastic). Some of the back story will be brutal and disturbing so feel free to skip over it if you'd like, I'll try and bold the lesson parts. But I always feel the importance of a lesson is lessened (ha) if you don't know how that lesson was realized.

In an earlier post I mentioned this serious relationship in high school and if there is one lesson that I have always in my mind, it's the one I learned from the break-up I went through. To spare the details for now let me just say the break-up was pretty nasty. I spiraled down into a horrible depression and refused to talk to anyone and started cutting myself. Cutting myself had been something I used before when I was depressed from a break-up a few years before (same guy, should have stayed away). Eventually things started getting so bad that I was planning out my own suicide. I had written letters to family and close friends telling them how much I loved them, but my pain was too immense. When my therapist finally caught on to what was happening she immediately put me on suicide watch at school. Eventually I got help and I'm here today with a new outlook on things. No matter how bad things get, no matter how much you want to give up and say "screw it", the world just keeps on turning. Find a way to fight through it. Ask for help, remember what matters most because just because you stopped doesn't mean the world does too.
I've also mentioned that I broke up with my fiance not too long ago and while the break-up wasn't hard, the aftermath has been a pain in the ass. We moved in together a couple months after we started dating and I was 18 and naive. I always assumed we'd get married so we got a joint checking account, put my cellphone on his bill, and when we had bills they went under his name. Once he moved out and I went to cancel the bills that I wouldn't need anymore I ran into a crappy road block. Since they were all in his name I couldn't cancel them. I wanted this break-up to be clean,  unlike my last one, but I had to keep in contact with him to get everything solved and figured out. It's been a headache to say the least, but it definitely gave me a lesson that I plan to pass around to anyone I know that tries to get in this situation. Some situations may be different, but it can always happen so keep it in mind. Don't move out with your boyfriend at 18 and definitely don't put all the bills in his name. Break-ups happen and if you've got this stuff combined it makes it that much harder to go your seperate ways. Even if you're engaged, things can still go south so just don't do it. Stay with your parents or move in with close friends, it's a helluva lot easier.

And another one regarding the last story. Don't get engaged at such a  young age, especially if you really jump the gun because everyone else is getting married. Young marriages break-up or go south real quick because we don't have the real life experiences or maturity to make them last. Sure some may succeed, but I've known far more couples to get a divorce or stay miserable because they got married at 18, 19, or 20. Stay together longer, get to know each other more before you decide to tie the knot.

No matter how awesome a guy is or how much you love him, DON'T ditch your friends for him.
I've lost good friends and ruined friendships because I became too wrapped up in a relationship and didn't make time for them. Guys come and go, but your friends will always be there.

Don't lose sight of your goals when you're with a guy. My dream is to be a pastry chef and I gave up school because we couldn't afford it. In all honesty, if I hadn't moved out of my parents house I wouldn't have to work full-time and put my college education and career on the back burner. It's much harder to go back to school when you've taken a break as I'm finding now, but I always keep in mind that being a pastry chef is my passion and who I am and I won't let that dream go. Don't let anything get in the way of achieving your dreams.

A lot of my lessons have come from my past relationships if you haven't noticed, but that's where I've been kicked down the most. I've picked myself back up everytime, even if it took a few months, and learned to just keep pushing through. Life is tricky and as my favorite quote goes, "Nobody said it would be easy, they just promised it'd be worth it."

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