“The world is full of suffering. It is also filled with overcoming it.” -Helen Keller
Even though I am just 16, I’ve lived my short life with so much pressure, which I’ve finally realized comes from me.
During my life, I have lived through more challenges than most teenagers, and at times I didn’t think I could handle it.
My life has never been easy. My parents broke up when I was two years old because my father was unfaithful to my mother. It was hard. The rancor between two people can last decades. And now, 14 years later, they have overcome some of their differences, but the bitterness is still here, and so, the suffering too.
For two years in school starting when I was seven, I was battered by my schoolmates. Although I was very young I can remember how hard it was going to school knowing what was waiting to me. Most of the time it was a psychological abuse, and for this reason, it made the effect less obvious.
After this I spent one year totally alone because everyone disregarded me. They made fun of me all the time and that was hard to deal with. Luckily, I found the strength and courage to tell this to my parents.
Sometimes the hardest part of dealing with a difficult problem is acknowledging it. When you recognize your problem, you’ve taken a huge step.
I thought I was on the right track after this, but I still struggled and eventually started suffering with an eating disorder.
Sometimes, the things we do in life seem completely insignificant, and we don’t think about the consequences of our actions. That’s how it was for me—I thought I was limitless.
Like other kids my age, I didn’t want to be a conformist.
Still, I felt I wasn’t good enough, smart enough, beautiful enough, friendly enough, or hard-working enough. So I just didn’t care about myself. I wasn’t important.
So, what did I have then? Everything, in fact everything. But I was just too busy abusing myself to recognize it.
During the last year and still now, I am trying to overcome my disease. I am doing this by loving myself and letting others love me too, because if you don’t love yourself, you won’t be able to receive love from anyone else.
Self-loathing is an alley without an exit. We can’t keep going down that road—we need to turn around, show ourselves, and learn to love ourselves.
And I began loving myself with the help of Buddhism, when I found this amazing blog, and I realized that despite my struggles, I am full of love, and I am strong enough to get through the challenges I face.
If you’re also going through a hard time, remember:
Even when you think you are lost, hold on.
When you feel all alone, hold on.
If you love someone who doesn’t love you, hold on.
If you are ill and you cannot see the light, hold on.
If you have lost everything you care about, hold on.
If you feel you are less than anyone, hold on.
If you’re not sure you have any reason to live, hold on.
Hold on because we only lose in life if we don’t love ourselves and don’t appreciate how wonderful life can be on the other side of what we’re going through.
Likely, you will find situations in your life where you will have to do and face things that you probably don’t deserve. Everyone deals with unwanted troubles; how we deal with them makes the difference between each one of us.
I had to live awful things, but now, I am proud of the way I faced them. They have made the person who I am right now.
So whatever your problem, your suffering, or your situation, remember that everything passes; nothing stays.
You could be the person who you want to be, and your experiences will give you the necessary strength to live the life you dream about.
Photo by AlicePopkorn
Valle is a 16-year-old high school student from Madrid, Spain.
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