Reflection, and A Better New Year

Today is New Year’s Eve, which means 2012 is almost here. A New Year brings a fresh start, and new hopes and dreams. For me anyway, and this is exactly how I am looking at this new year.

Today, I was introduced to a young man by the name of Ben Breedlove. If you don’t know who he is, he is an 18-year-old young man who died on Christmas day from a heart attack. He had suffered his whole life from serious heart condition called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. The reason his name has been in the media recently isn’t because of his death, but because of two YouTube videos he posted shortly before his death. His videos show courage, strength, and adorable sweetness that should be watched by all, and should inspire everyone who views it.

I did not know Ben, but can tell by his videos that he had a lot of strength. While he tells us about his near death experiences, he flashes a smile that is so intensely sweet. That smile shows who Ben was. It shows us that while he battled this heart condition, and was probably exhausted from doing so, he was courageous in his battle. His heart may have been weakened, but his soul grew stronger with every beat. He didn’t let his condition define him.

I will always remember that smile.

Reflection

My friend, Tony, introduced me to Ben. He introduced him to me through his own blog, where he discusses what Ben’s message and spirit meant to him. I walked away after reading it with the need of some deep reflection. Both of their stories are amazing, and truly touching. They both made me reflect on who I am, and what my purpose is.

This past year I have been using my depression to help others. It has been my goal to make sure other women do not go through the years of darkness like I did, and understand there is nothing to be ashamed of with seeking treatment. While I believe this is an important goal, as my soul is meant to help people, I am not positive it is my only purpose. I believe everyone should do what they love, and for me, that is not only helping people, but advocating. I am studying Social Psychology in college right now, and have come to realize that Sociology is really important to me. Learning how society works, and ways to make it better. Part of my goal for this new year is to start writing more on social issues affecting our country, or even smaller issues affecting people I know. If they have an effect on my close friends, chances are they have an effect on millions of other people in this country.

“The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe.” ~Gustave Flaubert

With our country on the downside of the hill, we need to refocus our attention to the things that make us great. We need to focus on the people, the creativity, and the ability to have anyone, regardless or race, gender, socioeconomic status, etc., reach their full potential. This is important to me, and I hope my readers will continue to read and support me through this endeavor.

I will continue to write about my experiences with depression. It will not be going away anytime soon, so it is still a part of me. However, my other goal for the new year is to not let it define me. Ben has shown me that you can have an illness or condition that can be life threatening, and still live life to the fullest. I need to do this, and remember that smile to help guide me through. I am a woman, wife and mother with goals and ambitions who happens to have depression. That is all.

My last goal is for me. While I love helping other people, I need to focus on me. I have been putting myself last for so long. It is time to look at me, and work on making me better. I have new running shoes. My goal is to lose 10 pounds by my birthday, March 5. I promised my husband that if I got these new shoes, I would start walking again, and work up to running. I know how exercise makes me feel. I know how eating right makes me feel as well. Since I am working on not letting my depression define me, part of that job is to exercise more. I feel good after, which keeps the depression and anxiety down. Win, win.

I am very excited about this new year. I am going to do things I enjoy, including writing about things important to me. I am going to work on me, while working on being a better person all around. I should also be a graduate with a Bachelor’s degree come this time next year!!

I hope you will continue to follow me throughout this new year. I am very excited about the possibilities. I would like to thank Ben for inspiring me, may he rest in peace. I would also like to thank my friend, Tony. I do not know if we will ever meet, but I really hope we do. I would also like to thank my friends and family (you know who you are) for continuing to support me. I love each and every one of you!

Look for a special giveaway in the middle of January to celebrate my blog’s 6 monthiversary!

Here is to a New Year! A new positive, inspiring, and truly awesome year!

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4 thoughts on “Reflection, and A Better New Year

  1. Nicole, you truly are an awesome person. I am glad that I have left an impact on your life; you definitely have with me. I remember the night that I wasn’t feeling well and in my search for advice on how to cope with life and the sadness I carried, I was so happy to find someone as genuine and compassionate as you. To be honest, meeting you has been one of the events in a sequence spanning this entire year that has helped me regain my faith… in God, in humanity, in myself. To know that I have a person like you in my life, I truly have no reason to ever be afraid. And don’t worry… I have never felt the need to leave the world since that night. Like I was told, I have much to do… *we* have much to do.

    Thank you so much.
    I love you, Nicole.

  2. I am so blessed to know you.
    What a ride this year….err last year has been eh?
    I never knew the power that our words had until I started plugging away my story on the computer.
    Sometimes we feel so small but to someone, we can truly make a difference like Ben…and you.
    There is someone out there right now looking for that shred of hope and knowing that our words can help heal…that’s an amazing thing.
    Best wishes and good health for 2012.
    xoxo

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