(Written as part of The Daily Post: Daily Prompt – Right to Brag: ell us about something you (or a person close to you) have done recently (or not so recently) that has made you really, unabashedly proud.)
I have so many reason to be proud of those around me, my family and friends, for their fantastic achievements, and often find myself feeling ‘warm and fuzzy’ from the realisation that I am blessed with such fantastic people around me.
The accomplishments aren’t all related to their careers, education or worldly successes, but more often to their progression as human beings.
I may be one of the youngest in my family and group of friends, but I always felt so very proud of them – age is irrelevant.
Just within recent days, a good friend got married, a cousin found a fantastic new job, friends graduated from their degrees, my sister is almost reaching her due-date (I’ll be one embarrassingly proud aunty!) etc
All of these have left me as a big ball of happiness, and I can’t express enough how proud I am of all of these people whom I love and care for (brings a tear to my eye!)
However, when it comes to my own accomplishments and achievements, I prefer not to feel ‘pride’ in its arrogant sense – the true satisfaction of the achievement usually comes from the smiles I see of those whom I care for as they congratulate me.
This does not mean I lack self confidence or that I do not love myself, which I know I often have issues with, but it’s more about where the source of satisfaction lies for me.
That defines what makes me feel proud.
Out with academic, career orientated and skill development achievements, I guess one of the only times I’ve recently felt ‘proud’ of myself was over something which I never thought would mean so much to me.
Something that was so simple in comparison to everything else I’ve done in my life (and, regardless of my age, I can say that I have done a lot), and yet it was something that was probably the hardest of all.
I broke free of certain chains that had bound me in a constant hell for a long while.
As with many (and not trying to sound emo!) my life, from day one, has been built on more negative and painful events, but my family and I were the type to never give in and to keep fighting. How could we give up when we know how much God loves us that He blessed us with so much too, and how could we give in when we knew we have to continue to fight the good fight!?
Hope, smiles and positivity are what I strive for!
Yet, the most painful chains of all were related to something much smaller than our constant battles – my own stupidity.
I let myself stay in a place where I had been very badly mistreated for a long while, hoping that if I continued to forgive, show mercy and patience, that things would turn out ok.
I teach self defense, come across as strong and unbreakable to many (from what I’ve been told!), but one thing that no one can control or fight is the workings of their own heart.
Well, long story short (like that ever happen, Naz!), after recent more painful developments, I finally managed to break free when I saw the absence of humanity, morality and faith in that certain place. I had stayed in hope that another human may see light, but after that, there was no space left for me to stand in a place where there was no foundation.
As minor as a feat as this may seem, for the first time in my life, I gave myself a pat on the back and felt proud that I was dealing with it much better than I’d assumed.
Maybe it was because I’d had to go through the disappointment and pain so many times that I just became used to it, or maybe because I had readied myself for the blow after experiencing it before… but I’ve managed to slowly stand again and not break as badly as the countless times before with this one ‘place’.
Yes, the pain still exists everyday in the form of heart crunching memories, but I have hope for a better future and in this World.
I was looking through some old documents and stumbled upon a letter I wrote to myself two or so years ago, and the words reduced me to tears. So not only would I like to thank the people who supported me through the hard times, for being there, but also my past self for the words she left for me.
“To the future Naziyah.
Don’t let anything hold you back any longer. You’ve been through more in your few years of life than most people ever will in a lifetime, so you DESERVE to have what you want. Work hard for it, fight for it and don’t ever forget to smile, no matter where you go. You know better than anyone that there have been times when your smile was almost stolen from you… don’t ever let that happen. Your smile is one of your strongest weapons, so polish it and keep it glowing.
No matter who may come in and out of your life, learn to live and let live. If you’re hurt, you know where to turn (God). If you’re feeling alone, you know Who is always with you (God). So don’t be afraid, and let yourself spread those wings as far as they can reach. Soar high, Naziyah, and don’t look back. Your past, and I, shape who you are today, but do not allow us to control who you will become. Take that power into your own hands.
You can do it. When no one else will, just remember that *I* believe in you.”
… I’m proud of you, Naz! Keep up the good work =)