Haters only make us better

In the past I have been ridiculed and targeted with hateful statements. Yep, it’s true. After doing good for others, I have also been shocked by the reverse actions people take when the “enabler” decides to make a firm change. When I say change, I mean she turns around and walks and keeps walking... Let me make it very clear, she slams the door, turns the dual keyed deadbolt, and throws out that very key.  Then she plans to hold on because they are going to judge her no matter what she does, so she is going to stand tall and allow them to judge her TRUTH.  Truth is told by actions that follow the words from our lips. In case you didn’t know, the star of this enabling story is ME. I once enabled so many and until recently have decided to set some very defined boundaries.

As life continues to push on, people eventually show their true colors. It might take days, weeks, months, or even years. (Honestly if it takes years, you might want to have your inner self checked, because I am pretty sure they have always been that way.) I ask myself “What makes people act in such a hateful way to a person who once supported them financially, spiritually, and emotionally? My answer, plain old jealousy, insecurity, and total ignorance.
I’m sure you have heard that as we get older, we realize it becomes less important to have a ton of friends and more important to have real ones.  And what I mean by “real ones” is those who understand the concept of loyalty and SHOWING UP. If you want to find out who is real, screw up or go through something very challenging…then see who sticks around to help support you. And to be clear, they support you without asking for money or having you pay for everything for them while they are supposedly supporting you.
This is what I am going to share with you.  Nothing in my life has come easy. I have been through some very very dark moments. I have tested the waters of life and made it to the other side when I should have drowned along the way. I have had the weight of the “world” on my back that I carried for miles and miles. I have been without food, shelter, and money in my pocket. There have been bad choices that came with severe consequences. And boy have there been a ton of tears shed from my eyes. I won’t even go into the level of fear or doubt that I have been privy too. I am riddled with scars both internally and externally from not only people, but this disease, that is also no cake walk.
I am where I am today because of hard work, dedication, passion, sweat, and the constant desire to prove anyone and everyone who didn’t have one positive encouraging word to say to me, to go FU%$ themselves. When I got hit (and please note I have been knocked out several times in my life, especially with RA) I somehow found the strength to get back up. There were days it didn’t come easy or quickly, but eventually I got back up to stand my OWN ground. I changed my mindset and started believing in ME. When the cards were stacked against me, I decided to grab a pair of scissors and cut through them individually. I realized that this ONE LIFE belongs to me and ONLY me.  I decided to change my perception of failure. I realized that failure was the only part that was going to push me to be better. I would rather continue my life with opportunity, so I can understand and truly believe that I am capable of anything. I finally realized that the more I loved my decisions, the less I needed others to love them. I simply found courage!  I think Steve Jobs said it best “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”
MAKE IT COUNT by surrounding yourself with the dreamers, the doers, the believers, and the real ones who plan to SHOW UP! 
PS: And don’t let the haters get you down, use it as motivation…

Ashley Stevenson