This Rocky Life: ‘Change’ – A Guest Article by Sydney Nolan

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I love sharing the gifts and talents of others. Introducing a guest article and photo by my niece and goddaughter, Sydney…

‘Change’ by Sydney Nolan
Change. The one commonly used word when we run out of ways to explain how you feel. It’s just, change. Everybody changes. You learn new things, you grow, you experience things you never thought you’d experience.

Everything that happens throughout life has some sort of impact on you. That’s just how life goes.

Usually, these sorts of changes happen faintly within the course of ones life. Slow to the point of being unnoticed. But this last year I can honestly say that I’ve changed the most.
Growing up, I was always involved in sports and being social was my niche. Although I’ve experienced many amazing things throughout my 23 years, it wasn’t always rainbows and butterflies.

There were times where I’ve felt like I didn’t fit in anywhere (mostly because I didn’t know who I was). With that came depression, which took over me like a giant black cloud on a sunny afternoon.

These things were often extremely exhausting mentally and physically and it was something I struggled with a lot. But I was always the type to put on my happy face and continue on with life, always trying to please others.

Yes, I was a people pleaser. I liked to impress the coaches, teachers, friends, boyfriends and especially my parents. Do you know how exhausting it is to always try and please others even though it’s not making yourself happy?

I became engulfed, drowning in social acceptance and wanting to feel loved by everyone that

I forgot who I was and what I wanted in life. That was high school.

Then came University. Those are apparently some of the best days of your life. Well maybe for some people. My University was small- 1,000 students approximately. Everyone knew your business like it was their own and they made sure of it. It was like high school all over again.

Competition after competition, trying to please everyone so you didn’t get talked about or humiliated. By 4th year, I reached complete and total emotional exhaustion. I hit that point in which you don’t think you could bounce back from.

Well that was just over a year ago. Since then, I have found my purpose. Just over one year ago, I had my son Leo. This past year has tested my limits, made me soar and sent me crashing to the ground.

I cried more, laughed more and spent a lot of my days confused. My heart got broken. I lost friends. And I learned that sometimes those “that’ll never happen to me” situations, may actually happen to you.

I also gained incredible friends, who have taught and inspired me more than I could have possibly imagined. They make sure I don’t take life too seriously, but push me to work hard every day.

I had to figure out how to let people in while also stitching up my wounds on my own. It wasn’t easy and I spent time questioning every move I made. But I don’t regret a thing. I can’t. I have a beautiful baby boy looking up to me.

I’ve learned too much and experienced too many important things, to look back and say “I really wish I could take that back.”

Am I proud of all my decisions? No. Did I say and do things I probably shouldn’t have? Yes. But that’s what helped me grow. And it was all worth it.

Who I am now isn’t afraid to make mistakes as long as I learn from them. I thought I was strong then, but I’m even stronger now. I know how to listen to my heart without completely ignoring my mind.

With every loss, I’ve gained something new. I’m still young. I haven’t figured it all out and I’m still going to make mistakes. Life is still going to test my limits but I know how to push through. Change is the best thing that could ever happen to you.

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Julie Hryniewicz
Julie Hryniewicz is the Wellness Director at Achieve Fitness & Wellness Centre (A Division of Mane Street Salon and Spa). Julie has been an inspirational speaker, adult educator and workshop leader for over thirteen years. She is the author of ‘Whole Living’ (2009 – DVD), ‘Natural Balance: How to Energize, Heal and Simplify Your Life’ (2006 – Book) and ‘What Happened to my Tires?’ (2004 – CD). You can find Julie on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/JulieHryniewicz For speaking engagements, she can be reached at (705) 253-2348 or juliehryniewicz@gmail.com.