Journal Day over on Sometimes Sweet

This is a long one...

Credit: Sometimes Sweet Journal Day ****

Sometimes Sweet is one of my daily reads
I love when she does Journal Days because they give people more of a focus and purpose to write.
I find myself embarassed on Tattoo Tuesdays because I am one of those people that always admires others tattoos and want to talk about them even though I don't have any of my own.
I admire her positive and supportive attitude.
She has an adorable family whom she is so proud of.

This will be the first Journal Day I have participated in but it is one that resonates with me.

Journal Day V4.
Looking at all of the life you've lived so far, can you pinpoint one time frame or instance that you feel truly contributed to your growth as a person?  This may be a turning point, a positive or negative experience, a moment or collection of moments that stand out in your mind...something that changed you as a whole.

I have been blessed with an amazing family.
We have always been closer than most.
I catch my parents slow dancing in the kitchen on a regular basis.
My brother and I, are best friends granted this is more after we both became adults and moved out of our parents house.
My sister and I work(ed) in a 9x9 office five days a week for six years

I didn't realize that my family lifestyle wasn't the norm until the last few years.
Left to Right: Sister&Husband, Momma and Papa, Brother&I
There are two moments in life which I would consider turning points that have significantly influenced my growth into the person I am today.

1. My momma being diagnosed with breast cancer
2. Having my heart broken after a four+ year relationship

Though they happened a couple years a part, I realize now, one event would be setting me up for the other.

You see, when my mom was diagnosed, our world shattered to pieces. Mom's are the glue to every family, especially mine. Being threatened to have this person taken from your life, is really hard. When you can't do anything to make someone better, it is really hard. When you are the baby of the family and you become your momma's emergency contact on her medical forms, it is really hard. Still to this day, I don't how she did it with a smile on her face and love in her heart.

As devastating as this time was for my family, we were beyond blessed by it. As I mentioned before, my family has always been close but now we were a fighting unit. We were going through this journey like the world champion side of Red Rover. Red rover, Red rover send cancer right over because we are going to kick. its. ass.  

Fast forward two years: I am in my last few weeks of college. I have been dating a handsome boy for just over four years and though we had our not so happy times, things were always good. We were madly in love. He was my best friend. He was my support when my mom was diagnosed. He was my movie buddy, my dinner date, my snuggler and snowboarding teacher. He wasn't a planner, never could be on time, spontaneous. He was everything I wasn't. We evened each other out.

I couldn't remember life before him, and I didn't want to know what life would be like after him. We had our differences: I grew up in a Christian home, he was a steadfast Atheist. I enjoyed an adult beverage here and there, he didn't drink- at all. I was a preppy lil blonde girl who had a thing for the bad boys; he was a bad boy with the softest heart covered in tattoos, gauges and piercings with a thing for blondes. He was raised in the Bay area by his beautiful Momma, I grew up in Chandler Arizona. I have dreamed of getting married, having 2.5 kids; he hadn't seen a marriage work and didn't have any plans to marry. It never should've worked or really even happen. I had started re-hanging out with an old friend who was driving to San Diego for a BMX competition. He had just moved to Arizona and was forced to go on the road trip, since his roommate was going as well. And the rest was history. I have always believed and trusted in love. I knew we loved each other, and though these differences made certains areas of our relationship more difficult, more diverse, love was all we needed. 

Then it happened. He was done. I wasn't everything he needed me to be. I wasn't who he wanted. I was crushed. but a little relieved. it was like 98% crushed/2% relieved mind you. We had had talks before, but I always fought it. I always said I would change. I would be better. I didn't want to lose what we had. But something changed this time. That relief I felt, it was my small chance to get the life I dreamt about. To have someone who wanted to be a better man because of me. Wanted to make me his wife, not his permanent girlfriend. Invested in my friends and hobbies... This time, I fought it a little bit. I told him things would be different, we could work on it. We went to dinner and things seemed like they did everytime we had one of these serious conversations. But the next morning, he was gone. The person I loved turned into someone I didn't know. But so was I, I didn't fight it like I always had. I was losing my best friend. The person who knew me better than most anyone. This time, I knew I needed to let it go for me.

The next few weeks months were a blur. I had to force myself to eat, force myself to go to school (oh yea, did I mention I was graduating college two weeks after I had my heart broken), force myself to the gym. Force a smile and hold back tears on the regular. I remember one time so vividly, I was driving to my spin class and I turned around in the middle of the road and went straight home into bed and didn't leave for two days. The only thing I really remember during this time was my family. My mom being my support, my movie buddy. My sister forcing me to eat at work and keeping me busy. My dad holding me when I was crying.  I couldn't have made it through that time without them. They listened to me over and over again. They let me cry in silence, or forced me to hug it out with them. They distracted me. Prayed for me. Let me be mad and sad. They were sweeping up all the pieces of my heart and holding onto them. And when I was ready to start putting it back together, they were there glue guns, duct tape and staplers in hand.

Its been over a year since 'The Break-up' and it was one of the best and hardest things that has happened to me. Sure, I miss him. I miss what we had. But the person I am now, was worth it. I am so much stronger than I was. I know myself better now than before. I have invested in my own hobbies and friends, instead of compromising to accomodate someone elses lifestyle. I have found my voice, to speak up for my hopes, desires and dreams. I have learned my non-negotiables. I learned a lot from that relationship and break up, which is making me better for my future. I know too much about myself now to let go back. Please don't get me wrong, he is a great guy just not my great guy. I look back on our memories with a smile on my face, and warmth in my heart because I can see my growth. There are so many positive things that came from that negative time. I am blessed by those struggles.

It has been almost four years since Bev's Boobie Brigade was formed and though it was a really challenging time in all of our lives we wouldn't change it. My mom is healthy, our family is closer than ever, and we were able to share our faith, lean on the Lord and not be another statistic. I learned how important family is, how strong blood can be. We don't take each other for granted like we once did. We make time for each other as often as we can. I am a part of something greater than myself, a family unit others would love to be in.

I have been changed as a whole in the last four years. My heart is not the same heart I had before but as great as all of these new changes in me have been, what sticks out most is how incredible my family is. My family has changed as a whole, and it is something beautiful to be a part of. Through it all, thick and thin. Whether it be cancer or a break up... we are the world champion side of Red Rover. We stand strong in our faith, we stand strong in our family, nothing can break the chain we have been made into.

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