This past year has been full of incredible negative and positive events, which have most definitely changed my outlook on life. This is for the better. It used to be that if someone asked how I'm doing, the answer was "okay" or "I'm alive," where now there are days I can answer that I'm doing well, and surprising to even myself, it's true. My life, over all, is good. After fighting through abuses, anger, after enduring the tears, learning to walk again, learning to run again, and learning to eat again, I'm now... happy. Not every day, of course. No one is always happy, but I'm most certainly happier than I've been in a long, long time.
Though high school was miserable and, in all but maybe two classes I'd taken during the whole of my high school career, a waste of time, college is absolutely brilliant. The commute is painfully long - I drive and ride the local light rail system "Trax" and it takes me an hour and a half each way - but cheap, because the UTA pass required for boarding the train is free with University of Utah admission. I managed to secure a scholarship with the U that covers all of my tuition for eight semesters as long as I keep a 3.7 GPA; it has saved me financially. I don't have very much money in the bank, but I have enough that I won't have to worry about working until the summer, taking into account not only gas and book costs but also any emergencies I may have with my vehicle, etc. That is, if I can convince my family (who I'm still living with, unfortunately) to allow me to continue being unemployed in favor of upholding my grade point average requirement. Right now, they're in a mindset where they want me to be working to "improve my character," which for all the reasons they could have provided (financial stability, building up a resume, etc.) is the most illegitimate. I didn't get my full-ride scholarship with a lack of good character, and I like to believe I'm a good, responsible person.
Socially, a lot has improved, too. I'm grateful for those of my friends who've stuck with me despite the natural distancing that often happens during the transition from high school into college. I met some new friends, too, and I'm glad for it. Even stronger is my gratitude for everything that one individual in particular has done for me. Physically, emotionally, psychologically, I'm so much healthier than I've been for essentially my entire life, and it's all because of him.
There are so many things worth living for, and now I'm ready to pursue or continue to pursue those things. It won't always be easy... I still have struggles in my life. Although my health has improved dramatically - I'm not walking with a cane anymore, did you know? - I still have some trouble with a few things, and that can get pretty bad sometimes. School will be difficult, and keeping my GPA high enough to retain my scholarship has to be top priority. Family issues continue to rage on, silently in the background, growing... I don't think they'll accept me for who I am, when that conversation happens. It may take years of not associating with one another until they learn to accept me, even if they still can't understand.
But ultimately, I'm smiling again. I have hope again. And, despite all the difficulties that lie ahead, I am happy.