Anything worth having, doing or being will take courage. It will take you making a pivotal decision and then a commitment. It would be nice if we could simply sprinkle magic fairy dust over us and everything would change for the better. But we both know that’s not possible. Make the all-important decision TODAY that you are going to stand up and fight for what you want or need.
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FULL VIDEO TRANSCRIPT
Hello there, fellow warriors and trauma disruptors. Let us talk a little bit today about making the decision to stand up and fight. And that means standing up to fight for whatever it is you want or need. It can be many things. Some of us are flat out on our backs on the mat with our beasts on top of us, whispering in our ears and screaming in our faces. I was there for 13 years, listening to, “You’re a bad mom. You’re a failure. Life is passing you by. All of your good days are in the past.” And on and on it went. And I had a lot of stuff going on in my life at the time. Probably like you do. We all have simultaneous challenges going on, right? Wouldn’t it be great if you just had one at a time? I mean really, especially when you’re going through something major.
In any case for me, I had as I said, a lot of major stuff going on. But the biggie, the one that shattered my heart into a million pieces was my daughter, Jamie, my firstborn, my only daughter who was riding that roller coaster from hell herself. We were each riding one, she was on one as a result of her addiction. And I was on my own as a result of her addiction. Unfortunately, her life just kept spinning further and further and further out of control. And as any mom would, I tried everything I knew to try to save her, to stop her, to change her, to make her quit, to force her on a better path, to convince her, guilt trip her. I tried it all and nothing seemed to help.
And of course, that’s spiraled me further into darkness. I was in despair. So whatever it is you’re going through, it might not be anything like what I am. Can you relate though?
Can you relate to that feeling of being out of control? Especially if the heart is involved, can you identify with the lack of control and wanting so badly, praying, hoping, wishing, dreaming, and then nothing’s changing?
Unfortunately, what I’ve discovered is there are so many things that are completely outside of our control. I mean, if you really took out a piece of paper right now and made the list of what you can control and what you can’t, the list that you can’t is pretty dang long. The other one, the you can control, pretty short. And I’m talking about things that you can directly control.
You want to know what the short list is? What you think, what you say, what you do, and even your feelings to a large degree, because our feelings are driven by our thoughts, for the most part. I say that for the most part, because feelings can kind of come out of nowhere, right? Yeah. That’s for a whole another video. In any case though, what happens is, we get stuck. We get down on that mat. We live in that dark place. Or maybe it isn’t something as challenging as having a son or daughter in addiction, it could be anything where you just feeling stuck. And if something would just change, right? Most of the time we’re waiting, hoping, wishing, dreaming, and praying for something outside of our control to change. Then we don’t have to change or we don’t think we need to.
And that was my case for sure, with Jamie’s addiction, if she would just knock it off. I didn’t understand addiction that well in the beginning anyway, but if she would just get clean, then my life could go back to normal. I should put hand quotes up, right? Normal. Because I discovered that nothing was ever going to be normal again, no matter what Jamie did. But one day I found myself… Listen, this is just my story. Yours can be completely different, but hopefully you can identify. I found myself one day standing in my kitchen and I blurted out something that had been on my lips so many times, and in my head far more times. To my husband Rich, I said, “I don’t want to be here anymore.” And what is significant? There’s a couple of significant things about that moment.
First of all, I was never a depressed person. I was the kind of person who might be depressed for an hour. I mean, a day would be big, but it just wasn’t me. I was pretty positive and hopeful and happy and funny and fun and all that kind of stuff. So for me to be thinking that I didn’t want to be here anymore. That got my attention. Wow. That was significant. Also, what was significant about that moment is sometimes our lowest points can be the most important. They’re pivotal. So if you’re listening, watching this today and you’re thinking, “Man, I’m down, Valerie, I’m really down. You don’t understand how I feel right now.” I need you to get it, to understand, to find a little bit of hope in my story, because I took a tiny bit of hope.
I mean, my faith was in the toilet. I mean the whole thing, my self confidence was at an all time low. And my value, not just as a mom, but as a wife, as a friend, as a family member, every… you name it, as a business person, I was just really down. And so that’s all I had. Listen, my friend, I had a tiny bit of hope and a shred of self-confidence. I mean, literally I don’t even know where I found it from. And I just made the decision that I was going to stand up and fight. And listen, I had no idea where I was going or how I was going to get there. I just knew I couldn’t be like that. I couldn’t live that way. And that certainly could not be my legacy. Really?
That’s the legacy I was going to leave for my son, Sean, and even for my daughter, Jamie? But Sean was already losing his sister. And that’s what I was going to show him? Wow. What a role model, right?
I was self-destructing and that’s what I was going to leave. Sorry, I get a little emotional about this. That’s what I was going to leave as the legacy for my son as my legacy for him. And I just thought, “That can’t be.” And so I developed initially they were called the Nine Actions, I now call them the Nine Weapons of Hope and they’re all new and improved. Well, not all new, but lots of parts of them… Did not even make sense? Are new. And I hope you’ll check them out at valeriesilveira.com. You can also go… And then just go to Nine Weapons of Hope. And then you can also go directly to that page at nineweaponsofhope.com. In any case there were these nine things that I finally clawed my way through and figured out and started to do and to use.
And that’s why I decided to put them into some packaged tools and resources that other people could use too. And people are. I hear from people all the time that these nine things are giving them hope and helping to change their perspective, their attitude, and their decision. Their decision to stand up and fight. And so again, that’s what it all begins with. It starts with your decision. You don’t have to have all this stuff figured out. I didn’t have anything figured out. I had no clue and there was no Nine Weapons of Hope. I didn’t have that resource. I didn’t have that arsenal. You can. You can use that. And even if you don’t get something out of this message today, just a little nugget, even just a tiny bit of hope that says that you can be happy again.
And you know what? I don’t know what’s ahead in your future. I don’t know. I know that there will be challenges, whatever it is, no matter how things start to smooth out for you or not. I know that your life will have challenges because life’s tough, it’s just the way it goes. Life is tough. So we have to get tougher. And getting tough is not always just… How do you like that? How do I look? I’ll have to look at my video later and see how I looked doing that. Sometimes it’s learning to live in peace and step out of the chaos and have some self-care. There are a lot of aspects to my Nine Weapons of Hope. This right here is one teeny tiny introductory summary of the one weapon of hope called your decisions. And I hope that it just inspires you to say, “You know what, that’s it. I don’t have to live this way anymore.” Because if you’re just going to keep waiting for something else to change, I want to give you a couple of things to think about.
What if they don’t change? Or what if God forbid, they get worse? Because I stood up to fight and I started down this path and I started reaching people and helping people and writing books and speaking and doing things like this, like videos. And then my daughter was murdered. And that… that one, excuse me, obviously ripped my heart right out of my chest. It left me with a permanent hole in my heart. No question about it. I’m never going to get over her, but I have learned that I can live with this hole in my heart and you’ll have to check another YouTube for that one. But I’ve learned to live with this hole in my heart and still find joy and happiness and peace and all the good stuff in life. Wow. I discovered that my heart was big enough to contain all of it.
But if I hadn’t started doing that work, man, I don’t even want to think about where I’d be today, because I wouldn’t have had these resources to strengthen me. And to give me back my value, my confidence, my hope, to help me stop living in fear and start living courageously. So that’s what I want for you, wherever you are today and whatever your future holds. I hope that today is the day that you say, “That’s it. I’m going to make that decision to stand up and fight.” But let me give you just one quick warning. One quick warning. Maybe I should do a whole other YouTube video on this. I think I’ll do that right next.
Once you make that decision, you are going to stop deciding. You’re going to fall down. Somebody’s going to say something. There are going to be things that come up against you and you’ll have to make another decision. But you know what? I’ve just decided on the fly here. I made a decision that I’m going to go ahead and make a separate video on that. So stay tuned for the next one. For now, remember whatever you’re going through, you’re not alone. Link arms with me. We can do this together. We need to disrupt trauma for good. Whatever you’re dealing with, whatever you’ve been through, it’s real. Nobody’s taking that away from you, but it doesn’t have to own you. It doesn’t have to become you. It’ll always be a part of your story, but it doesn’t have to keep you down. If I can do it, then so can you.
Remember your story matters. So live it courageously.