by Foster Bullock
We all go through hard times at some point in our lives.
Hard times can come when we are young or later when we are adults. Sometimes it can feel like hardship follows us through life and never leaves: like being born with a black cloud over one’s head where nothing seems to go right, no matter how hard one tries. I get that feeling myself when things go wrong or events happen that are beyond my own control. The feeling of not being able to do things such as making adult choices without upsetting the people around me or attempting to make everyone happy but then one person isn’t happy and then it becomes a domino effect and soon everyone is upset and it feels like my fault.
These thoughts plagued me a lot when I was younger while growing up in two households with different rules and perspectives. It was so hard. It got to the point I almost gave up. If something bad happened, I would experience two different reactions, depending on which house I was in. In one, there was disappointment but we would calmly discuss the matter and work things out. In the other, guilt was thrown on me. The yelling imbeds into your brain until it is there, permanently. You don’t feel safe, and it holds on for so long. Even when you go back to where you feel safe to be yourself, the pressure is still there.
Everyday, I would make sure I did nothing wrong, but it seemed like no matter how hard I tried, something during that twenty-four hours would go wrong and my smile would vanish. If it was something small, like the dishes or something at school, I’d be reprimanded. I felt like I couldn’t do anything right. I would even try doing something that I thought was helpful, but it would turn out to be anything but helpful. Soon I gave up. I was not motivated to help out at all, as it was not recognized or appreciated.
Finding my Voice
That was my day to day. My life changed when I realized what I could do really hep others. It was not only the people I was very close to. This is when I found my love for writing. I found a way to bring a smile to someone’s face through not only actions, but with the art of the written word. When I first did my Christmas poem in 2010, I was able to make the members of the congregation smile while telling the story of the nativity from the point of view of a shepherd. I had found something that I could do, and it wasn’t just that either.
Working with children also gave me that sense of happiness. When it first started, I was not sure. I felt the children would not like me because I was someone different coming into their lives. Then as time rolled on, I learned that I had a interesting gift. From first sight, the children would try to help me and I knew how to brighten their days. With only a smile and maybe even an encouraging word helped them through their days. Once there was even a student who could not control his outbursts when someone said something about them. I only told them not to allow those words to get to them. As time went on and I saw him again, he had improved. He was almost a completely different student. Taking those experiences from when I was young allowed me to help someone of that same age not make the same mistakes I made. It made me feel like I could make a difference.
Feeling like you cannot do anything right is normal with everyone at one point in their lives. Where they themselves try so hard to help others and yet it might not always help, but finding that gift that they know they can do, and it can be either medical, comical, and even preaching can make someone smile or even help them brighten up their lives and maybe even inspire them to help someone else in the future. It took me a while to find the thing I did best, trying all different things that was interesting in my eyes, but I soon found that one gift I had and use it everyday.