“The more you feed your mind with positive thoughts, the more you can attract great things into your life.” – Roy T. Bennett
I had a decent upbringing; I was treated well and had a loving family, with a few arguments along the way over various petty things. What I was lacking though was drive. People would tell me that I was talented with art, so I considered a career in the art world. Unfortunately, I couldn’t picture it for myself. Then I was told that since I was so interested in music, that I should consider a career in the music industry, but I was just blowing my own horn. I then considered becoming a film editor, but the course had been cut. Finally, someone thought that I would be able to make it as a writer. What I lacked though was the inspiration. I didn’t have enough life experiences to make my stories or poetry interesting enough. One day, after great consideration, I decided to step out of my comfort zone and do something drastic.
I had met a girl online several years ago, and things seemed to be going well during our lengthy chats and conversations. So, one day I packed up all of my things and drove more than two days to make a new life with someone that I loved and that I thought loved me in return. At first, things were going okay, though some of her actions and comments had made me second-guess my decision about moving. The stories of her life traveling abroad and the celebrities that she claimed to have met started becoming more embellished and hard to believe, but because of my hope, I trusted her word and continued with the relationship. Eventually, we were married and that’s when things started getting out of hand. Utility bills and rent payments were being missed and yet my paychecks continued to disappear within days of cashing them. She had become irate over stupid things and was constantly falling asleep for hours at a time. Even her kids were having a hard time understanding her actions.
One fateful day, she had borrowed my car to take her boys back to their father’s home, and a few minutes after dropping them off, she fell asleep at the wheel and was involved in a serious accident. I found out later at the hospital while talking to the police officer who was on the scene, that she had unprescribed narcotics wrapped up in her purse and had overdosed while driving. Needless to say, she was thrown in jail and served 30 days in prison before being released. She was then expected to take part in a rehab program. We knew of a local pastor who ran such a program, and he agreed to take her in. For the next month, she was not permitted to see anyone on the outside and was forbidden from consuming any kind of drugs or alcohol. She also took part in bible study and daily prayer while she was there. When she was finally released and returned home, we continued to attend church services. Things were finally getting back on track and I started to see the woman that I once fell in love with. This, however, was short-lived, for she began to hide pills and purchase narcotics that were not prescribed to her again. She also began smoking marijuana, which didn’t bother me much at first, since it was only a small amount once in a while, and it cut back on the number of cigarettes she smoked. After a month or so though, she started craving more which then led to using a higher grade of weed. Eventually, I finally had enough and moved out, she was smoking away most of my paycheck within three days of me getting paid. I eventually packed up a few of my belongings and left her to fend for herself, and that is when I finally made my way back home to be with my family; a family that I had virtually lost contact with a very long seven years earlier.
Moving back home with loved ones surrounding me and a renewed faith in God, I began to take baby steps and moved forward with my life in a more positive manner. I removed most of the negativity from my life and started fresh. I had next to nothing to my name when I returned, so the starting-over process took some time, but it developed me into a more structured lifestyle. I thought less about socializing at the bars and more about using my positive outlook to help others. In less than two years, I managed to pay off some of my outstanding debts, organized a very successful high school reunion where I got to see friends that I hadn’t seen in over 30 years, and I found a steady job with a secure future.
Looking back on all of the many pitfalls that I had faced during my adult life, such as two failed marriages, the loss of my dad, and financial struggles, I could have gone in two different directions. I could have gotten depressed and became suicidal, which I honestly did contemplate, or I could see each downfall as a stepping stone or a building block that provided me with the foundation that was needed to build a better life. We all look at life slightly differently, and I have seen it from different perspectives myself, but it is the positive path that has proven to provide the best results for me. I went from living in a middle-class neighbourhood to being trailer trash in a very bad neighbourhood and then back to the good life once more, but I don’t regret my negative experiences; if it wasn’t for those moments, I wouldn’t be able to empathize with situations and help others struggling with their own paths in life. I believe in God, I believe in the goodness of others, and I also believe in myself. If you can find the positive path in your life, you can achieve more than you have ever thought possible.
It was these inspirations and struggles that brought me back into writing. By using my pain, sorrow, joy, and positivity the right way, it has given me the drive and purpose that I had lacked in the past. That along with the inspiring stories of other writers keep the belief pumping strong within my heart and soul. Never give up on yourself, because as long as you believe, you will achieve.