• Audra Oakes

What I learned in 2018!





The only power over us besides that from which the universe was born, is the power of what we decide our experiences, the events of our lives, and our circumstances mean to us. We have the power to see the challenging and difficult times as the resistance needed to make us stronger, faster, and better in our pursuit for our goals. We also have the choice to allow the challenges to overwhelm us.


This year was one of my most challenging years ever. I felt like the ground had been ripped out from under me and I was left floating without a safe harbour. For the first time in a long time I questioned my value, ability and lost faith a few times along the journey. To add to the pain I was feeling, I recoiled from many of my social contacts. I did not want to be a burden or felt like I would be judged if I opened up about what I was going through and experiencing. This was dangerous as my support network almost vanished overnight and in their place I made connections that were, for want of a better word, temporary.


I hoped to draw out stability and normality from these relationships as I felt lost but the more I tried, the clearer it became that these relationships were not made to last. They were a band-aid for what I really missed, my family. These and other challenges buffeted me continuously and I began to feel it was meaningless to hold on to hope. I began to see my optimism and hope as an enemy, simply because I began to believe that failure, defeat and my loneliness were a force greater than I.


Of course, I was wrong. At this point the Universe held out a benevolent hand to me once more and I saw my circumstances change which reignited hope. My problems were not miraculously wiped away with a wand! I worked hard, I studied, I filled countless forms and had many conversations! Yes I was beat and felt spent beyond what I have felt but I achieved at the end a long standing goal from which my life and the lives of countless others would greatly benefit from.


Here is what I learned in 2018.


  • I am only as special and valuable as I believe myself to be. If I believe myself to be greater than my challenges, I will be. It does not matter what raw ingredients for success reside inside me, I could never have achieved my goal unless I had held on to some hope, some of the time.


  • The Universe has my back. I re read “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho and remembered that the darkest hours do usually proceed dawn, which in my case was a reawakening and a decision not to go quietly into the night.


  • There isn’t one person for anyone when it comes to love. If both parties considering a committed and loving relationship decide that in addition to the chemistry felt between them, there is the decision by both individuals to be patient, loyal and kind first to themselves then to each other, they will be each other’s soul mate.


  • Loving and valuing yourself is not selfish. It is the most important first step to loving and valuing others. You can only love as much as you are loved. Who knows better how you want to be loved than yourself?


  • Everyone fucks up sometime. I have and will again. You will too. Such is life. Get back up and get on with it!


  • There is always a fair bit to be grateful for. Yes the Universe has your back but it does not owe you a thing! If anything, you owe the Universe but the universe does not come to collect. Karma does.


  • Give what you want to get. Put out what you want to receive.


  • Don’t judge others. You’re only setting a very heavy burden for yourself.


  • Be in the moment with those around you. This is one of my biggest challenges because I live in my head. When I have been able to step out of my headspace and mental occupation, thus enjoying the moment, I have seen beautiful things happen.


  • Honesty is hard but you deserve it for any possibility of a good change for the future.


There isn’t enough time to list all I have learned in 2018 but tonight as I write this, these are the things that stand out to me shrouded in recent loss and pain and heralded from a place of joy and victory! This is all one thing. This is life. What this means to me is simply that I am alive and grateful to be!


I am excited to see how much I’ve grown from my challenges in the New Year.


Now from my family to yours, we wish you a Merry Christmas & A Happy 2019!




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©2018 by Audra Oakes