The I AM
I encourage, request, and shout from the top of my lungs, asking you to give life and meaning to your own “I AM!”
On a summer day in August 2016, in an apartment with no food in the refrigerator lay a woman naked, afraid, and alone. She had just quit her job with no backup plan and no way to pay her bills, all resulting from the misery of an unfulfilled life.
After obtaining her master’s degree and searching for almost two years, she still could not find a job, which caused her to take an entry-level job in a different field. The job was unfulfilling for her and drove her to a state of despair. She risked everything rather than remaining in that job another day. She felt alone and suffered from low self-esteem.
Tears rolled down her eyes each time the sun would rise and set that summer because she knew her life was wasting away. Other moments to her were as though time was standing still, fighting to pull her out of the deep depression and psychosis ripping her life apart.
For 20 days, she stayed in the apartment, hoping to take her last breaths in the very place she thought her dreams would come true. Dreams to prosper, start a family, and have a rewarding career. The apartment became her prison, and she came to believe there was no way out. A combination of choice and mental illness contributed to her imprisonment.
Attempting to slit her wrists, the blood to her was a sign of relief. She was relieved to finally find a way to relieve her pain and being one step closer to the end, or so she thought. As she closed her eyes and sliced her wrist once more, the room fell silent, and the failure she considered herself to be was finally being killed. Moments after passing out from the pain and lack of nourishment, she woke up in the apartment as the same woman who was supposed to be killed. Wrapping her arms in cloth, she devised a plan to live life homeless and in seclusion. She told herself, “I am no one, and I deserve nothing.” This statement would follow the woman for the next three years of her life.
The woman described above is me. Every day for 365 days, I woke up thinking, feeling, and believing my life wasn’t worth living. I didn’t believe my life mattered. Daily I thought, who am I to think that my life can be any different. Hanging my head low, I walked out of the “prison” I had placed myself in and began living on the streets. Life for me was numbing from being sexually assaulted to living in a cardboard box. I asked myself during the final days of my homelessness how do I change the “I AM” to ultimately become someone I never envisioned I could be. My mindset changed, and I realized I had more fight left in me.
For me, “I AM” stems from my connections with a higher power and spirituality. The “I AM” symbolizes all the possibilities of a person and the limitlessness of their potential. Immediately upon focusing on the “I AM,” my life was transformed. Anyone can overcome failure and hardships by transforming their “I AM.”
Remember, my “I AM” was I am nothing. What if, back then, I would have told myself, “I am everything I allow myself to be.” From the day I regained shelter to now, I am conscious and purposeful about my “I AMs.” I am a conqueror and a survivor. I am powerful beyond measure, and I am a winner.
I encourage, request, and shout from the top of my lungs, asking you to give life and meaning to your own “I AM!” Start today by removing all the old negative “I AMs.” From this day forward, declare who you are boldly with confidence. If my life can be reconstructed, yours can too.
I leave you with these “I AMs”:
I chose to rise from the ashes because I am somebody.
I am all that I say I am. I am all I’m meant to be.