Time has healed so much pain as I've gotten older. And the pain that I felt from the way others treated me or the way I treated myself has turned into happiness. The happiness I didn't even know I could feel - ever. I remember as a kid feeling joy and making my parents proud. Wanting to always be the best and showing off what I knew and why I was ”the best”. It was always an expectation but talked down when I didn't do enough. Self-confidence was lost when I started asking myself what is all this for? This is at a young age, after leaving Detroit and moving into the suburbs. As life went on, it felt I was alone even while doing way too much. Getting a job at 14, buying my own car, drivers training, school plays, sports - and with no support from who I cherished the most for so long. My parents. It became easier to surround myself with people who loved to have fun while also thinking there are no consequences to actions no matter what I did. Elaborate - I put myself before others and their genuine character. If I had to steal from someone to get to the end goal of being the best - I thought it was the risk since no one would suspect lil ol me. Young nerd, nice, and beloved by everyone. As I got older, I only hated who I was becoming even more while not being able to realize I was doing so much good to undermine the bad. The bad only got uglier. This is when I truly hated myself and felt sorry for this person. Loneliness sets in. And while all this is going on, I'm also suppressing my sexual identity because that's a whole other can of worms. So taboo and weird, but really just what I was raised to believe. Things turned around with a support system. People that I will never forget what they did for me and what they still mean to me. Sometimes it's very unfortunate when you lose contact with these people. And it keeps me up at night sometimes, since I wish I could say directly to them how much their kindness changed my life. Reflection of the last 32 years has been refreshing and also great to make peace with me. I started to love myself again. It's no unfathomable to think I was so unbelievably lost because of not having love in my life. No one in my family with maybe my mom ever said I love you to me growing up. She still does it even though our relationship isn't as strong. It's so easy to wallow and hide, but where I am now in life is worth celebrating. And it's now encouraging me to go beyond just doing one thing. I can help other people and make them find their happiness. Either through this medium, social media, fitness or just being there for them. It's been so hard finding purpose in my life and feeling like I can't be beyond good. Or I did X so I'm not allowed to do Y. And Z - that'll fucking never happen. Now, what CANT I do? I'm excited to see what's next and channeling what things I know and building a presence off helping others move the biggest obstacles in their lives. Sometimes it's just themselves.