CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- It wasn't until I was straightening my office on New Year's Eve that I realized how far I've come over the past year. Even if most every mile was traveled in wee, little steps.
I started out fearful, replete with nevers.
And more than a few will-never-agains.
I tried giving myself pep talks. Tried hanging out with positive people. Tried prettying up inspiring quotes and sticking them to my office walls and bulletin boards. I even got into my laptop's calendar program and inserted random compliments willy-nilly so far in advance I forgot that I'd done it.
So months later, I'd be sitting at my computer and all of a sudden, a little note would appear on my screen saying something like, "Stick with it. You're getting there" or "You look skinny -- are you losing weight?"
I was cautious and gun-shy and fearful, and maybe a little bit bitter.
But the important thing is, I didn't want to be any of those things. I was tired of huddling in the corner. Had figured out that sooner or later, life has pain to dole out, whether you move or stand still.
So, as I was cleaning my office, I started taking down some of the quotes, and as I read them again, it was almost like flipping through a photo album of where I'd been.
"When things aren't adding up in your life, start subtracting." -- Anonymous
"The best way to get even is to forget." -- Unknown
"Courage is not the absence of fear. It is the conquest of fear." -- Robert Heinlein