As I mentioned in my first blog, Just start somewhere, I was not always like this. I was happier and more positive with dreams and aspirations a long time ago. The beginning of the self doubt started my senior year in high school. It probably started before this but this was the most prevalent time I can remember thinking negative self thoughts.
When I was in high school, as soon as I could start dating I met this guy. He was good looking. He was in school. His dad had his own business. We started dating and then his dad asked me to come to work for him. It was just on the weekends but it was great money for a high school kid. It was a petting zoo company and we went all over the area. Sometimes I got to work with my boyfriend and his dad and sometimes I worked with other crews. I loved it. I loved the animals, the people I worked with, and the kids that would visit the petting zoos. My boyfriend and I did not go to the same school and this was before the days of everyone having a cell phone. We would go days without talking but when we did it was hours on end. We would see each other when we could. We dated for over a year when I got a call from his step mom……
He was accused of molesting his two step-brothers. I was devastated. I think this is where my self-doubt really started. I mean, really I dated someone for a year and did not know that he was capable of doing that. Luckily, I was strong in my desire at the time to wait until I was married to have sex and we never did. When he would push the issue I would tell him that I did not want my first time to be followed by a week of not talking and then wonder if I had done something wrong. We broke up. After almost a year we were in contact again. We talked on the phone and he sent me a letter. It took a while for me to get the letter and I remember standing in a Catholic priest office cussing because I had not gotten the letter. When I did get it, I realized that he had put me on a pedestal. I did not want to be on a pedestal. I wanted to get past it. I wanted to know that he was ok. I think what I wanted to know was that he did not do it, that we were both ok and that I had not made a bad decision in feeling the way I did for him. I did not get any of that reassurance and years later he was prosecuted, convicted and is still in prison.
I remember the story being on the news and me thinking, finally I can talk about it openly. It is still hard to believe that I had no clue. But all of this is part of who I am and how I got where I am. This helps to me to understand how people can be affected even when the action was not done directly to them.
I have gone forward for years and I keep going forward from this and many other things in my life that are and have been difficult. I am living proof that you can too.