It’s been a rough couple of years for me. I’ve been through more than my share of loss and disappointments. I have attempted to take this step in starting my life over for the last year and each time I get close I hesitate and it seems as if something always comes to hold me back or hinder me. I don’t know if I’m skipping a step or if there is even a step process for ‘starting over.’ I’m at a point now where I’m not sure if I can ‘start over’. Is there a process? What do you do when you must ‘start over?’
Stranded in Life, (Charlotte, NC)
One of the hardest things in the world is starting over. The fear of the unknown creates stagnation in some to where they don’t push to move forward after a broken heart, a loss of a loved one, or job, etc. For some, starting over means letting go and that’s something they’re just not ready to do, while for others it means the beginning of something new and exciting. Either way, transitions in life are going to happen, figuring out how to handle them is a whole ‘nother story, honey.
In any situation, there is a process to getting back on your feet and starting over. I have started over several times, in college I changed my major…started over. After graduation, I broke up with my college boyfriend and moved into a new apartment and new job…started over. I spent 3 years at one job and got fired…started over. I moved from Alabama to Georgia…started over. I was evicted and everything I’ve ever own was taken from me…started over. I’ve lost loved ones so close together that it had my world spinning…started over. You see starting over is inevitable in life especially if you’re living it. There are too many highs and lows to avoid it. But guess what, it can be done and you can do it.
October 5, 2009 could have easily been the end but instead I chose to allow it to be my beginning. I got a phone call from my leasing office around 530pm asking me (yes asking) if I knew I was being evicted today and that most of my stuff was gone and I needed to come and see what was left. My mouth fell open, my heart stopped, but my mind kept thinking ‘this is not real.’ But when I pulled up to what use to be my apartment all I saw was some papers scattered over the parking lot, a shoe here and there, a few clothes thrown around, EVERYTHING was gone. I sat in my truck and cried. My friend Zan and her family came over and gathered up what was left of my material possessions put them in two garbage bags and put them in the back of my truck. All I had was the clothes on my back and what was left in two garbage bags. They took EVERYTHING from furniture, TV’s, clothes (clean and dirty), under garments, pictures, books, even my mom’s wedding dress that I had for a short film I shot a few months earlier. The whole thing just seemed to be a blur; I seemed to be moving in slow motion, in unbelievable awe.
I cried and prayed until the sun came up and then I listen to ‘Yesterday’ by Mary Mary and literally decided that ‘I’d cried my last tear yesterday.’ So, Saturday, October 6, 2009, I started over. My sister, Kim and best friends, Shannon, Kenya, and Christy drove up from Alabama and Tennessee and they took me to get clothes, under garments, shoes, all my necessities. When I say they took EVERYTHING but the clothes on my back that’s what I mean…EVERYTHING.
But you see, you can’t tell me I don’t serve an AWESOME GOD because within two weeks I was approved for a new apartment. And to the outside world I didn’t miss a beat, my smile never wavered and my spirit never faltered but to my inner circle this transition changed me. I didn’t dwell on what I didn’t have but rejoiced in what I did have…family and friends that held me at my lowest…I still had my jobs…I still had my truck…and I still had my FAITH, which allowed me to understand that what GOD has planned for my future required me to let go of all that I had in my past, to be stripped of what I was holding on to and allow Him to fill my life with His purpose.
Starting over is scary, letting go is scary, but if you allow GOD to move you in His direction I promise he want steer you wrong. I don’t KNOW if there is really a step process to ‘starting over’ but what I do KNOW is pray without ceasing to GOD because it’s guaranteed that He KNOWS. If you take the first step He will take the next two and if you get weary He will carry you. Starting over should be a time of rejoicing because you get another chance. Not a day goes by that I don’t reflect on where I’ve been, how blessed I am to be here, and preparing for where I’m going. So, ‘stranded in life’ I say enjoy starting over and do it ‘LIVING OUT LOUD!!’