Today I turn 44 years old.
I choose to look on the bright side.
I choose to follow the light even when it's so far off in the distance that I can barely make it out.
I choose to keep living. It's your choice to look on the bright side. Not pretending to be happy. None of this smiling when you're actually drowning. But once you make it out of that place of darkness, grief, sadness, trauma.............it's your choice whether you stand in a field and keep staring back at the destruction, the house on fire....or turn around and face the sun. It's your choice. Is it an easy choice? No. It's difficult and it's sometimes painful and there will be days you can't choose the bright side and that's ok. But if life knocked you down? If you were left in the dust? If your heart was ripped out while it was still beating and you are still alive? Then you can look at the glass as half full or half empty or you can just wake up every day and be thankful that there is a glass at all. Today I turn 44 years old. So…. I choose to be thankful that there is still a glass. I lost many things in my life. I’ve been left alone with my pain in the night. Friendships have been changed, lost, altered. People have said hurtful things to me that made my heart burn more than it already did. I lost my self-worth, my self-love, and I almost lost my will to live. I was in deep pain for a really long time and somehow I was resurrected out of my dirt hole. I was given another chance at life even after all the guilt I experienced, even after all the mistakes I've made in my life, even after all my faults and flaws and times I didn't choose to do the right thing and all the times I could have been helping others and I was only focused on my own self and my core family............even after all of that....I got another chance. A second chance biography. And I am grateful for that. I'm not going to waste it standing in the field looking back at all the destruction. God resurrected me and now it’s my life’s calling to guide others with my writing. I forgive. I forgive every last one of them that hurt me so that I can unleash myself from that pain, that remembering. I forgive so that I can choose the bright side without the darkness clenching at my feet. Forgiving doesn't mean what anyone did or said is OK. It wasn’t ok. I WAS A VICTIM TOO. I was a victim too….. I'm cutting the strings that tie me to thinking about what they did or said to me so I can free myself to live my life. It means what they did is so not ok that you are cutting yourself free from what they did. Forgiveness is brave. Forgiveness takes courage. Forgiveness cuts you free from those who hurt you and stops you from soaking in their darkness and possibly becoming like them. Forgiveness sets you free. It sets you free and free people will not be torn down. Free people feel more joy, more happiness, more of the bright side. People will dissapoint you. They will hurt you. They will let you down. People are human. Love them anyways even if you have to love them from afar to keep yourself and your heart safe. Love cancels out fear. Love lives on the bright side and that's where you deserve to be. On the bright side. Shining. Beautiful. Loved. And starting a new life even if you have to start all over again......you will be ok. The glass is beautiful. Be grateful you have a glass. Be grateful you still have a life. I am grateful that I still have my life even after everything I've been through. Why? Because life continues to suprise me. It continues to amaze me. I continue to meet people that I am convinced were sent to me by God to give me a message. Walk away from the past, from the pain and hurt inside of that burning house and find the trail that leads to the bright side. Walk there in truth. Walk there in authenticity. Walk there in bravery and don't clean yourself up after you climb out of the dirt. Show the world where you've been and where you're going. Life is hard and dirty and painful and sometimes awful. Be truthful. Be yourself. Don't hide your scars of faults to get to the bright side. It's not neccessary. Being authentic? It's the only way to get to the bright side and feel the warmth. You have to be honest about where you are each step of the way. You can't "fake it til you make it". When it hurts? Say it hurts. When it's painful and you feel lonely? Be honest about that. Choosing the bright side does not mean you're pretending to be happy, or that it's all ok, or that those who hurt you weren't wrong. It means that you choose self-love. It means that you feel in your heart that you were pulled up out of that dirt hole of pain, mistakes, and faults for a reason. It means you choose to keep living your life and finding hope, purpose, and strength even on your hard days. It means that you no longer blame anyone for your circumstances but choose to move forward with grit and grace. Choose to transcend above everything that has happened to you, everything you have done that you aren't proud of and live in the moment. Today is all we truly have and you have the power to change your life, change your life view, and change your heart. It's your life. Now get out there and live it. See you on the bright side. Love always, Nik 💖💖💖💖💖✨ Coffee’s brewing, light’s on…reach out if you need someone to listen. Your story is SAFE with me. Private message me or my email is: email@example.com I answer ALL of your messages, emails, texts. All of them. YOU are not alone. I am here and I care about you. There is a beautiful light inside of you that can never be bent, bruised, or shattered. I believe that we all have the ability to rise through any trials or struggles in our life with grace, joy, and God's everlasting LOVE. 💫🌙 His love endures forever. Psalm 136💫🌙 Leave me a tip to say 'thank you' for my writing if it helps your heart. God bless you! Your loving support helps me keep my writing and loving ministry 100% online so it is free and accessible to everyone around the world. Your loving gifts help me keep my website up and running and helps me offer free support to others who truly need it. I pour hours of my personal time every day into answering people's "Dear Nik" letters to help them through hard times. Thank you for valuing the LOVE I put out into the world. Words shared online truly do save lives. www.paypal.me/niktebbe https://venmo.com/nikki-bonkoski Please, reach out if you need someone to listen to your story. I'm here and I care about you. You are not alone. I am the founder of The Brave Ladies Club on Facebook as well as Grief Untamed & Manhood Untamed. My totally free support groups that help bring people together from all over the world. Because when you've experienced trauma? You truly just want to feel like you aren't the only one..that you aren't alone. Dear one, you are wrapped in warmth and light. Reach out anytime. xo Your stories are safe in my heart. If you need a place to lay down the load you're carrying. Please, reach out. My FREE Facebook support groups. The Brave Ladies Club: Support group for women who lost a spouse/partner to suicide. Women only. Grief Untamed: Support group for all death related grief. All Women & Men ages 18-100 are welcome. Manhood Untamed: Men's mental health support group. MEN only. The Brave Ladies Club Sequel: Support group for women who are 2 plus years past the suicide of their spouse/partner. A place to heal, find joy, and live forward. Comment on my writing: “Nik, Astounding. But, I am not surprised. I have just fallen upon your fabulous presence, via whatever mechanisms that seem to conspire such things. Your experience is the gift, ultimately to us all. Thank you for seeing the gift, and thank you so much for being one who understands the duty to share. The beauty is that you know what I mean." #WorldMentalHealthDay2023