Note: this is not my text message and this was not fully the case in my story but a similar pattern.
One of the hardest lessons I had to learn in my life was to let go.
I stopped asking those questions, why me?
I couldn’t play victim when the truth was true.
I did allow it to happen.
I stayed when I should’ve left.
I complained and didn’t do anything about it.
I felt as if I wasn’t in control of my life and my decisions.
I felt trapped, unable to change anything, using the excuses in my head as reassurance.
I listened to words I should’ve disregarded.
You have nowhere to go.
How can I afford to be on my own right now?
I can’t stay at my sister’s with my kids.
So I stayed, happiness draining, but plans were being drawn.
Finally, one day, I found my strength to change my life.
I stopped making excuses and I stopped being scared.
Scared of the change, scared of the leap I was about to take. Scared of living life with two kids completely on my own.
How the fuck was I going to do this?
Step 1: Money
I needed money to sustain my family. I was 24 years old. I was enrolled in a masters program racking up student loan debt. I didn’t have parents who were going to help me in any way. I had my sister and my brother, but my brother lived far. I knew I still had support from my ex’s family and to this day I still consider them my family! They have always been there for me, regardless of my choices!
However, I wanted to do this on my own. I felt like asking people would be a sign of weakness. I was tired of feeling weak. My sister helped me find places to live. I found the cheapest place I could find in the area. I needed to stay close as my kids were in school and daycare and I didn’t want to change all of that.
2014, I found a job in a field I absolutely love. I based my future schooling on this field. I knew the job I had would be one I would want to keep forever. So I found steady income and sustained it for at least seven months before I moved on my own.
I used my income tax to put a deposit down and move into my first 600 square foot apartment with one bedroom and one bath. I found a place that was affordable based on my income plus bills. I didn’t try to be lavish. I had to be realistic. My kids shared the bedroom, I made sure to buy a pull out couch so I could have a bed at night.
During this time, I took advantage of government programs such as WIC and food stamps. I have no shame in saying I did have that help as well. It was very much needed. I also got on the waitlist before I moved for childcare assistance as I knew I would need that. After completing all of the steps, the kids were approved for childcare and that was affordable as well.
We survived but I knew I needed to do better. Regardless, we were happy together.
Step 2. Growth
After a couple of years or so in our tiny apartment, I searched again for a bigger, more affordable place. The rent for the one bedroom was sky rocketing and I figured I could find something better. I started making decent money after a few raises and was almost done with my masters degree so I planned to get a promotion at work, playing my cards carefully. I worked in the field and company I knew had opportunities for growth and I did what I had to earn that.
I found income based townhomes, 3 bedroom 2 bath and it was amazing. We had so much room! It was perfect and affordable. I had to make some sacrifices sleep wise as I needed to drive my kids a little farther but, we did that for over three years and it was fine.
I met my current boyfriend and we had a child together. I made new goals because now our townhome was not so big. It was still affordable and we were content, but my goals included moving into a house.
Work wise, I got my promotion and continued to work my way up. Trying to learn and succeed. I didn’t want to fail as I felt that would be letting my kids down as well as myself.
Along the way, all government assistance was ceased, so now life was getting even more real and more expensive. My kids were growing, there was a new addition, food stamps would’ve been appreciated most but I understood that I made money to cover it and other people needed that money more. So I budgeted.
Step 3: Achievement
Although it was a rushed process, a house was secured this year in 2020. My boyfriend has made sacrifices for me so we could have this house and it’s bigger but comfortable still, not too big, but enough to fit us all. Each kid has a room, we have a dog now, wtf… I didn’t want the dog but he’s my best friend now.
Life is looking positive.
Why? I let go. I let go of something that was holding me back and pulling me down.
I made new promises to myself to succeed and be in control of my own life no matter the circumstances.
I am not a victim. I will not play that role.
I am a fucking survivor and I will do what it takes to survive for my children!
So if you need to let go of something that’s not letting you fly, start thinking and making moves.
Life ain’t fucking easy and you have to put in work. You have to make smart moves. You have to figure out what the fuck you even want and then you have to go get it! Set goals and smash them all!
We’re all just trying to survive in this world, I wish you all nothing but success and happiness!!