Maintaining a positive, healthy mindset has become my top priority in the past few years. Throughout my life, It has been a work in progress. When I look back to where I started to where and who I am today, it fills me up with so much pride and continues to inspire me to keep working at becoming the best version of myself. I know that the life I am creating for myself will only improve as long as I don’t take steps backwards and keep up with a happy—positive, healthy mindset.
So let’s go back to the beginning when I was not so positive because some of you are probably thinking “Ok Chelsie not everyone just wakes up loving life and has so much positivity”, and your right and I know this because I use to be this person for a very very long time.
When I was about 9 or 10, I had found out that my dad, the man who had been helping to raise me all this time, was not my dad, and this new man was that I don’t recall ever meeting. I had felt lied to, I had felt cheated, I had felt so angry, and I couldn’t give much trust to anyone. I felt my whole life; I was living with a stranger. I felt everyone around me was a stranger. I started to hang out with a new crowd of friends, a group that was known to the police, known to the public, and a crowd that caused nothing but trouble and fueled by drugs, I was 11 at the time, the youngest in the group while most of them ranged from 16-20. Why they let me in is beyond me, why they let me get into the things I did, again beyond me but I did make some solid relationships with them and this one couple more than ever who took me under there wing and looked out for me, kept me safe but also taught me how to look out for myself.
I chose to listen to my friends over my parents; by the age of 13, I was hiding a cocaine addiction. I was a loose cannon, my body was just developing, and I was disrupting it with drugs and alcohol, so I never let my brain or my body develop correctly, and due to this I had created some brain damage that blocked out certain functions of my mind so in a simple situation seemed over the top for me, I would get overwhelmed easy and dealt with a lot of anxiety I didn’t know how to work through because of this. I also developed an anger problem forcing me to go to anger management three times over five years. My anger was a loose cannon; I was a terrible person and would just randomly punch someone walking down the street because I didn’t like the way they looked at me. I would get a rise out of my friends and thought my actions were ok. Nights that I did sleep, I would wake up miserable, well first off because I only slept a few hours, but I would wake up unhappy, I didn’t want to face the day, I had started cutting my arms, I wanted to end my life. It was a call for help and what I didn’t realize at the time was, this was me putting out the universe, I hate the life I am living, but I don’t want to die, I want to live a better life. I was too much in a cloud; however, to see things clearly and see what I needed to do to change, I was also still a child not knowing any better.
Things started to take a dark turn for the worst, One morning, before I was heading to school I received a call from one of my friends that he went to pick our friend steve up for work. He wasn’t answering, this has happened before so what our friend does is climbs through the back window in the kitchen, but this time, steve was not sleeping through his alarm, my friend jumped into the kitchen to only see his body on the floor laying in a pool of his blood. Steve had been stabbed to death. Those words circled in my head over and over all day long, and I don’t think wit registered to me what happened until I tried calling steve later that day, and then came to the realization, I was never going to speak or see him again. Steve was my best friend that was the other half of the couple that took me in and looked out for me. I was devasted, I was fueled with so much anger, I started to experiment with more drugs like acid and ecstasy, anything that just wouldn’t make me feel anymore. I started fighting a lot more as a way to release stress it got to the point people would pay me to fight someone for them. I lived off of drugs and alcohol, I stopped going to school, and when I did, well I was high. I was fighting with my family more, and I felt the streets where my family more than my real family I was SICK. Still, of course, didn’t even consider that at the time, I just felt this is who I am, one-minute im good, im happy im up and the next im just down, Im angry, I hate lite, and the darkness fills my eyes. I wouldn’t sleep for weeks at a time only making my mental health worse, again im a child, these years were the most crucial to allowing myself to develop and I did not do that.
Two more deaths came to follow. When I was 15, my grandma, my rock, the glue to the family had passed away due to a stroke just after beating cancer, this made me so upset, my grandma and I were so close, and I felt lied to again in a way, my grandma worked hard to get through cancer wanting to give up many times, but she kept going, with a smile on her face and love in her heart so when she finally beat it we were all so happy that she could go back to living her best life, so when the stroke happened and took her away from me I was lost, confused and angry. I rebelled even harder to the point my grandpa would tell me my grandma would be rolling in her grave knowing what I was up to. The crowd I was hanging out with started to grow up a little and step back from being complete terrors, we started a dance group based off of some nights of street dancing we did and would rent out halls and have people to watch us perform ( along with some other groups), so I had spent a lot of time dancing, still doing drugs and drinking but had felt a connection through dance, it was the first time I had felt .. happy. I started laying off the drugs and drinking and put a lot of my efforts into the dance because it was ALOT harder for me to get it down, my brain struggled and had to come up with different ways to remeber and learn the choreograph. My friend Crystle was the other half of the couple I was speaking about above; she was my best friend; she had steves baby about a month after him passing, so I was with her 24/7. One day we were waiting for her to show up to our dance lesson of the day, she didn’t show, we all called her over and over, no answer, we all figures she must be busy with the kid and went on with our lesson. Later that day, we found out she was in a terrible car crash and did not make it. Well at this point we know, I don’t handle death well, I was about 16 or 17 when this happened, and I was so angry, I felt I had no one anymore, the two friends I had felt the closest with, are gone. I started to step away from the group, I stuck around for the dance, but that was about it. then came age 18, this was the last straw for me, I was given the news of my dad dying, and even though in the past I mentioned how I felt betrayed and cheated, my dad and me, the man I knew to raise me were very close, best of friends, I would tell him anything, and he would always be there just to listen, calm me down and see things, somewhat clearly. Right before he died, I was extremely angry with him and didn’t speak to him almost a month before his passing. I will never forget the day of my grandpa coming to my moms where I was staying at the time and sitting us down, we both knew something was not right but was not expecting the following words to come out of his mouth ” they found Donnie’s body hung up on the dock in the Kootenay Lake.” Any possible change I was occurring at the time, all went downhill.
At this point I did not believe in life anymore, I had no will to live, I did not care, I started drinking every night again, going on three-month benders of just always putting drugs in my body and not sleeping. I barely ate. I weighed 90 pounds and was skin and bones. I wanted to die, and I would try to overdose my self all the time without ever succeeding. I told myself I would not live past the age of 19. I never allowed myself to grieve through any of these deaths, I used the runaway method but you can’t run away. From anything honestly, it will always just linger, and that’s what I had learned later on.
When I was about 19 I met an amazing lady who was the first real friend I ever had in life, she was never scared to hurt your feelings, she always said things how they were, but that’s what a real friend is, someone who doesn’t take a shit, says it how it is but has your back and supports you 100%. Her place was always opened, for when I had nowhere to go, she taught me to love and trust again and build relationships. I started cutting a lot of people out of my life and bringing in new people. When I was about 22, I had met Dustin, and neither of us knew at the time just how much he was doing for me. He had given me a dose of love and respect and made me feel good about myself. I started to feel things inside of me change, and one day, I said to myself. I don’t want to be that girl anymore, I had a reputation that does not make me proud and gave him lots of hesitation, but even with hesitation he got to know me, he put trust in me, and that was everything I needed at the time. WOW, someone cares that much about me to live with the headache of receiving messages every day saying “don’t be with her”. He ignored those messages and put the time in for me, and I did everything in my power to give him the good women he deserves.
I started cutting people out of my life that no longer served me, started not to care as much what anyone had to say as long as I was focussing on my happiness. However, things started to get real, though, and the next few years where one hell of a roller coaster while I was coming off years of drug abuse and starting to see things ALOT more clearly. I had to face feelings I had been bottling up for so many years, I started to break a lot of barriers and learning a lot about myself which soon started to develop into self-love which for years to come has been a work in progress, but with this tiny little light of self-love, I was able to start respecting myself and changing a lot of actions. I opened my heart up more, learned to express emotion, but from this came a tiny downside.. the anxiety which conveniently is followed with depression. I would time after time fall into my little webs of depression, feeling alone and worthless. I would start to beat myself up for feeling this way and would tell myself; I am are escaping a toxic lifestyle, I am with someone who loves me, I am with someone who cares and thinks I am worthy, someone who just wanted me to be happy and did what they could to make that happen…. why was I not happy? I should be … I would feel the biggest guilt and fall deeper into the web, getting caught and tangled to no escape. There were some things to work through, and at times, many I wanted to give up, and some days, I would. it wasn’t until I was about 28 things started changing for me, I started to pay attention more to what triggered me to feel certain ways, what made me feel down, what motivates me etc. I noticed I spent a lot of my time working towards other people’s goals and was always doing things for other people. I asked myself what do I want. What makes ME happy .. once again, I went through another life cut, removing any negativity from my life, focused on what made me happy, creating a routine based on my happiness and keeps me motivated, through this, I started to notice my growth.
I had put it out to the universe several times without really knowing it, asking for a change, asking for a better life. Because I kept saying I wanted that, I made it happen, oh I worked my ass off, but I did it. Today I give so much thanks and gratitude to the universe for the change, I am so proud of myself for the change, I don’t even know who that little girl is anymore, it’s hard for me to remember this truly happened, it’s just not believable it’s just not me. Writing these more personal posts hit hard for me, I have to dig deep to get back these memories, and it was tough, but at the same time so rewarding because you just see your journey played out for you, you see where your roadblocks were, speed bumps that slowed you down and how you got onto the clear path.
So this is why Mental health and a healthy positive mindset is so important to me, I have been in a position where I no longer wanted to live, I had complete breakdowns for not being able to handle simple matters, I ran away from all my problems, I numbed myself with drugs and alcohol trying to cure my depression, I felt unworthy. I turned that around to waking up with a smile on my face, ready to see what the day has in store for me. I love unconditionally, I am aware of my surroundings and provide help or positivity where I can, I am happy, I am grateful for what I have, I am grateful for the people in my life. I am grateful for who I am and who I am becoming, I still have some ways to go, but that’s the journey of life. It is effortless for me to fall into a depression if I don’t stick to a routine and stay on top of my health, so I do my best and always make that my priority to live a healthy lifestyle. As each day goes on, I lose that little girl more and more, seeing more of my bright future, and that excites me, motivates me to keep moving forward.
I write these posts as a reminder for myself and to be there for anyone else. I vowed to myself that I would be that person I needed, to anyone feeling lost in their journey, I know how it feels. I don’t want you to have to take the long way I like I did Its important to start paying attention to the things that trigger you, make you happy, motivated you. what gets you out of bed, it is important to stop doing things for other people and do things for yourself, love yourself, put yourself first, cancel the plans you dread. Don’t change for anyone; change for yourself. I had for so long though I was changing who I was for Dustin, I later found, I was changing for me, sure he was motivation, but in the long run, I changed fr me, so that’s are fine if you have the motivation to change, just don’t change because they want you to or telling you how to change. It’s important to get aligned with yourself and live for yourself.