My story is a tale of failure and falling,
about a time when I didn’t know
if I could ever find my strength again.
When you’re on your knees trying
to muster the courage to stand again,
everything seems impossible.
Nothing is easy when you’re down and out,
and everywhere you turn
you find only disappointment.
From broken hearts to broken roads,
it’s easy to get lost
in the battle for survival.
Moments turned into memories
and before I knew it,
I was buried beneath
the faded dreams of yesterday.

Truth is, though, it’s in those moments
when the fires of struggle
threaten to tear your spirit apart
that you make a choice.
Choose to lose yourself
in the flames of misery
or face the flames and become the fire.
Rise again, the phoenix reborn
from the ashes of a painful past.
Sometimes, you find your strength
when being strong is the only option you have.
Forged in the flames of fiery trials,
I refused to let my failures define me.
I knew that to survive,
to become stronger and better,
I had to transform my tragedy into triumph.

No excuses, settling or half efforts.
The best way to dig yourself out of a hole
is to do it with all your heart,
filled with passion and motivated by pain.
I couldn’t always see
the light of better days
and there are still days
that I want to quit.
But I know I’m better than that.
I deserve more than that.
This is my life and my choice,
and I choose to live my life
with relentless optimism
and zealous courage.
I won’t be reduced, defined
or defeated by the people
and a past that tried to destroy me.
The fire burning in my heart
can’t be quenched
and I won’t accept anything
or anyone in my life
who doesn’t accept me
for the broken, beautiful
person that I am.
I don’t need anyone’s pity,
handouts or sympathy.
I just want their best,
all the time in all the ways.

Love me or leave me,
I’ll always be respected
and appreciated,
on my terms, no more and no less.
Yes, my struggles scared and scarred me,
but those are just the reminders
of where I’ve been,
not where I’m going.
I’m not who I was
and I’m not yet who I am meant to be,
but that’s the beauty
of writing my own story.
I can create every chapter of my life
just the way I want in the way I choose.
No matter where I go and what I do,
whenever you meet me,
you’ll realize one thing about me.
I’ll never be complacent,
ordinary or lacklustre.
In all the ways that matter
to all the people who I care about
heart, spirit and soul.
I’ll always be on fire for being alive.