I was this investigative, independent toddler, the happiest kid you can imagine. I can still vividly remember playing in the sand pit making mud pies, riding my bike, walking to school. In those memories colours are bright and it seems as if the sun is always shining, even on rainy days, as they too were special. At the age of 6, we moved from one side of the country to the other. I was eager with anticipation, but no one had prepared me for the changes life was about to bring. As the new school year started, I literally felt dislocated. All of a sudden, I deeply missed my former life. I did not learn how to cope well. I had a hard time making new friends. My self-esteem and everything else went spiralling down.
It took me more than 20 years to realize the sun could shine as bright again as it did in my memories, that I could be happy again, that I could be me again. I had been reliving on a daily basis what had happened to me between age 7 and 11. I learned that I didn’t have the right coping skills back than. As sad as it was, I couldn’t change that. What I could change, however, was the way I coped with my past in the present. This was a turning point in my life.
Everyone responds differently to life’s challenges. Some have learned to cope better than others. But every day offers new opportunities to sharpen those skills, to see the bright side of life, to be happy, to be you.