Off to the races

by Leila Dayne


“Sometimes it takes getting everything you’ve ever wanted, and losing it to know what freedom is.”

One morning I woke up and realized the life I had spent years building around myself was crumbling. It wasn’t gone, it wasn’t destroyed…yet. But I knew it wasn’t working, and I could see the cracks in the foundation forming. I knew that the life I had built wasn’t for me. It was a facade to keep society and those around me happy. The idea that if I do what is expected of me and found someone that loved me more than I could ever love them, then it would be okay and I could fall in love with my situation.

Imagine waking up everyday to the paralyzing fear of being found out as a fraud. That your ‘happy’ life is nothing more than a mask, put on for the benefit of others. That every moment you are awake is like being in a scene in a movie about your life. Acting, acting, acting. Sure, there are fleeting moments of real emotion but for the most part it’s just a charade. I was a ghost of the person I truly wanted to be.

It all got to be too much. I stayed up for days dealing with the emotional tsunami that took over my life, and then I finally slept. When I awoke, I found myself at peace. A peace I hadn’t known in years. It was clear to me what needed to be done. I could hear the whispers of change surrounding me. It was time to begin again. To start the journey to build a new life…a life I would finally live for myself.

This is the story of my journey. Of the highs and lows, and the lessons along the way. A way to hold myself accountable for always staying true. Will I always be right? I can guarantee I will not, but as long as I learn and grow, it will all be valuable in the long run.

And we’re off to the races…