Life is so funny the way it constantly throws you a curve ball or two when you least expect it. The part that is most important is watching the first pitch go by and learning what it looks like before you attempt to swing at it.
My life has given me many different pitches: sliders, knuckle balls, breaking balls, heaters. And while I haven't mastered hitting each pitch I know that I learn a little more every time I see one go by. This euphemism has nothing to do with baseball really. Nothing to do with stepping up to a plate and actually seeing pitches wiz by my head, but learning from life's experiences no matter how big or how small.
I've been through a lot in this life. More than some would say is necessary for anyone to have to go through. And with these experiences I have built a wall around my heart that is constructed so well not very many people can get over, around, through... nadda. I share these experiences with a lucky few in hopes that maybe I can turn someone's life around even in a minuscule way. I didn't chose the things that happened to me, but maybe the universe knew I was strong enough to handle the bad and strong enough to move forward with a smile on my face. Even if that smile is sometimes as fake as can be.
Over the course of the last 15 years, I have been through some things I maybe shouldn't have made it out of. Experiences that have left me shattered, broken, and even a little worse for wear. I've faltered - hell, I am human! But the lessons of life have deemed themselves to be invaluable. I know that with each passing breath I am better for having been hurt. And I can raise a daughter who is just as headstrong and capable of tackling this life that is never easy. She has already been through some things she shouldn't have had to, but life has a pitiful way of doling out crap.... and only the strong shall survive.
I've been told a thousand times and in a thousand ways "You are so strong." A lot of times it is just a front. A lot of times it has nothing to do with strength and everything to do with balance. I can take a punch, my eyes will fill with tears, but I am going to dust myself off and figure out the lesson in the madness. I am not as strong as everyone says - it's not about being strong. Its about being smart and having a never-ending desire to keep learning as much as possible.
This last ten months has been one hell of a curve ball. So many different things have happened and there were times where I should have broken in half, but I am here. I am standing on my two feet, strong as ever - smart as ever - and ready to swing at whatever pitch comes my way... so bring it on universe. I am ready for you.