MY STRONGEST SUIT IS MY LARGEST DOWNFALL.
The empathy I have for others has kept me in the shadows, had made me quiet, has made me miserable.
When I see a single mother struggling all I want to do is help her, hold her hand and tell her she can do it. She will struggle, it will be hard, and sometimes it will be overwhelming and you’ll want to give up, but when you push through all that and look back, you will see how very strong you were. You will wonder how you did it, and if you ask me how, I will tell you, GOD is how you get through it. When I see a depressed child all I want to do is talk them through their feelings and help them understand why they feel that way and how they can change the way they feel. When I see people going through marital problems I want to counsel them and help them to get along. When I see kids treating each other badly, I show them how to care for others’ feelings.
I have been invisible to others. I have been bullied. I was a teenage mom who couldn’t pursue her dreams. I was a single mother with a minimum wage part-time job.
I was a victim of sexual crime. I have lived without the constant presence of a father. I have had to deal with being lied to by a parent. I had to watch my parents fight as a kid. I had a sister with cancer at a very young age and I didn’t treat her the way she deserved and I regret that.
I have had to deal with my son coming home from school crying because he didn’t have a dad. I have had to deal with telling my son I couldn’t afford to pay for him to play sports. I have struggled financially. I have struggled with bad credit.
I have had to worry how I would provide a next meal for my kids. I have been through obesity. I have been there when people whisper about me when I walk by. I know what it’s like for people to not like me. I know what it’s like for people to think that you think you’re better than everyone else when the only problem the whole time was your depression.
My depression made me try to kill myself several times as a teenage girl. My depression made me hide out in my room. It made me not want to talk to anyone and people didn’t know I was hurting inside. They all thought I was just stuck up.
I have dealt with the uncertainty of my belonging. I have dealt with not knowing who I am or what my purpose is on this world. I know what it’s like to be lost in a crowded room full of close friends and family. I know what it’s like to be left out of family gatherings, birthday parties, and fun activities.
I’m still here and the lord has made me happy but I am happiest when I am able to help others. When I can make someone else smile, when I can give a needy kid a new toy, when I can feed a struggling family. When I can help a depressed kid. All of these things make me happy.
Why is it my downfall? Because I care so much about other people’s feelings, I don’t do other things I love to do because I don’t want to hurt other peoples feelings. I don’t say what I’d like because I’m afraid of offending someone. My whole life, I have held myself back so people don’t look at me like I think I’m better than them. I have avoided success because I come from a poor family and I don’t want my family to feel like I have deserted them. Some day, I will be able to use my empathy for good and not to starve myself of success and happiness.
Some day, my empathy will open a door that I won’t be able to close and I will have to leave people behind to explore a new beautiful world of making others happy.