Let's face it, I wouldn't be alive right now if it weren't for those who have shaped me into the woman I am today. I'm not just talking to my family and friends; I am addressing those who were once toxic in my life, as well.
To the boy who told me I was too ugly to be his girlfriend in the 6th grade, thank you. It gave me time to focus on other things instead of boys who have yet to hit puberty.
To all of my old volleyball teammates from 4th-8th grade, thank you. Some of us are still close; some of us haven't talked since the end of 8th grade. Each and every one of you helped me through middle school and prepared me for high school. I am immensely proud of all of you. You are great mothers. You are great spouses. You landed a fantastic job. You are working so hard in school to achieve your dream degree. You are shining, and I have enjoyed watching you grow over the past decade.
To my best friend, thank you. You are my biggest blessing. We have known each other for well over a decade though, so you're considered family. You have helped me through some rough times and I will never be able to thank you enough. I cannot wait until you're my maid of honor and the godmother of my children.
To the boy who broke me, thank you. Our relationship was my very first relationship. It ended very badly, which made me realize that I need to stand up for myself more. It helped me open my eyes because I was such a pushover. I don't deal with anyones shit anymore, and it's thanks to you.
To the girls in high school who destroyed every bit of self-love I had for myself, thank you. You made me never want to go to school. I love education and learning; however, I hated walking to classes or making new friends, because you made the rumors about me come to life. There wasn't a day in my life from ages 14-18 where I didn't want to kill myself, in fact, I tried too many times. I graduated from high school and promised myself that I would never let myself be treated like that again. I would never let myself "believe" that I'm worthless, because I know I'm not.
To my boyfriend, thank you. You are the biggest pain in the ass that I have ever had, but you saved me. You helped me grow and held my hand through all of the relapses and bad days. Even though you don't clean the house to save your life, I love you. But please start cleaning or I'm going to find another boyfriend.
To my parents, thank you. Thank you for never leaving my side, watching me make decisions that you knew were awful, holding me when I needed it, helping me with money (what's personal finance?), and being the best role models I could ever imagine having. You made me learn.
There were times where I hated you, I even told you that I needed to move away from you when I was 15 years old. Now, I'm old enough to realize that I didn't appreciate you as I should've. You both are my best friends now, and I am eternally grateful for that.
To my brother, thank you. You have helped me through so many traumatic incidents. I have watched you cry because of how bad I was hurting. But the crying didn't make you stop. You never left my side once. Sure we've had our fair share of fights, but I would've been mental, physically, and emotionally destroyed by now if it wasn't for you.
Thank you for letting me FaceTime you about a handful of things, especially about the dark places that I feel like I'm getting close to. You have grown into a great, handsome man, and I cannot wait to see where you go. I love you more than anyone. An ideal career: recreate Webkinz to where adults can play.
To the guy who came into my work and told me he was going to kill me, thank you. I am now way more aware of my surroundings and you've taught me a lot about the legal system.
To my dogs, thank you. All three of you. Well, maybe four of you. I chased a lost dog for 11 miles once and he made me realize what my purpose here on Earth was. So, yes; all four of you.
You have never spoken a word to me, but actions speak louder than words. Each and every one of you has had an impact on my heart and I can only thank you in treats and kisses.
To everyone in my family, thank you for your endless support. I am very thankful to have a family that hypes me up, especially when you post a picture of me on Facebook.
Thank you for shaping me into the woman I am today.