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Each and every one of us has something that we are terrified of. Be it snakes, spiders, public speaking, confrontation- we all have demons that we must face.
My “demon” is confrontation (and snakes of course). I avoid it at all costs, even to the point where I let myself get hurt because I don’t want to upset anyone else. For the first time on my life, I learned to stand up for myself this week. I didn’t like the way I was being treated by someone I’ve known for quite a while so I did something about it. It was the scariest and most difficult thing I’ve made myself do, and I’m still trying to recover from the repercussions, but I am so proud of myself.
There is that old cliché that every parent teaches their children- the only way to overcome your fears is to face them. This week, I learned that there is nothing more true.
I know I’ve said this before, but life throws things at us sometimes that we think we cannot handle. It is only when we are forced to that we learn we CAN handle it. A family friend’s grandmother has always said, “If God brings you to it, then God will get you through it.”
Cancer enters millions of families’ lives. Hardship strikes when we least expect it. There are some things that just cannot be avoided. But what is so important to remember is that, although it may feel like it, we are not the only ones struggling. We are not alone, not ever.
I think the hardest thing that can be asked of me is to stand up for myself. What I’ve learned, though, is that if I don’t and I suffer because of it, then it’s my own fault. I am trying to grow up, to learn how to stand on my own two feet, and to introduce myself to the world. I was letting someone keep me from being me because I didn’t want to upset them. After my confrontation I realized that I like who I am. I’m proud of my family and where I come from. I’m proud to say that my mother is a breast cancer survivor, and I’m proud to say that my family is made up of people who will fight for those they love. And if someone has an issue with that, then that is their problem. I am no longer going to make it mine.
We all have demons in our lives, maybe not literally, but figuratively. Being afraid of snakes is normal and does not inhibit my life. Being afraid of confrontation does. If I’ve learned anything from my mom’s cancer it is this: nothing is more important than family, and you have to face your demons if you want to defeat them. Once you do that, then God and the people who love you will take care of you. You just have to get the ball rolling, and then know that you WILL be ok.