Another Monday and, as promised, another Profile of Change. This week's contributor is someone who has nearly completed all of the residential levels of our program and is right on the brink of moving into transitional living. She has made great strides and is very proud of her success. Here is her story...
"Since I came to Odyssey"
CW, 17, Salt Lake City, Utah
Since I have came to Odyssey House I have opened up and talked about things that I swore to myself I never would. I have learned that helping people means holding them accountable and standing my ground even if they do get mad at me. I have also learned that it is ok for me to say no and stand up for myself, that I am worth it.
When I look back to before I came to Odyssey House I couldn’t even look myself in the eyes. I always tried to cover up what was really going on with me and who I really was. Now when I look in the mirror I say positive things about myself and more often then not I believe them.
I have learned so much about myself and why I do the things that I do. I have always tried to hide the abuse that happened in my past. I told myself that it wasn’t a problem and if I gave myself time then I would get over it. When I was using I wouldn’t let myself feel all the pain that I kept inside. If I started to feel it I would use more and more, because I felt like it would take all my pain away. Now I know that in order for me to move on and let go of the past, I have to let myself feel the pain and work through it. I also know that it will never hurt as much as it did when it was happening.
I have also learned how to be assertive and stand up for myself. Before I came here I never felt like I was good enough or worth enough to stand up to others. Now I know that I am worth it and I care about myself to much to let others hurt me.
I have also learned how to reality test things and how to hold others accountable for what they have done, instead of trying to take responsibility for them. I have also learned that I can not change my family. I have to do what I need to for me, so that I can have a healthy life.
I am beginning to build a healthy relationship with my dad, and I am learning how to set appropriate boundaries with my mom. I have graduated high school and right now I am attending a local college in Utah. Which are two things that I never thought possible before now.
I am proud of the changes that I am making and the changes that I have made in my life and I am finally doing it for me.