Saturday, December 3, 2011

I made a difference...

I made a difference in someone's life! 

I am so touched that me, my quirky little self, could do something so powerful....I had to share. 

A while ago, I wrote that post for Amanda at On a Book Bender  about my past and the difference books have made in my life. I also had some open discussion about my past with some close friends. Prior to any of that...I’d told my best friend and my Ex. That's it. My only sister still doesn't know. Somehow, in the years I've spent rebuilding myself since my Ex and I split, I've come to terms with it and, in that, felt the need to share a little. Not the point though. 

The point is that I wrote a letter to my Krav manager and instructors (which bares resemblance to what I wrote for Amanda) telling them about my past and how much of an impact they've made in my life. It's hanging on the wall in the gym. Signed by me. There for all to see. I don't really think much of it. But today, a man stopped me after class. He stopped me to tell me that he'd been sober for several years, but he was having a particularly bad day recently. Whatever was going on was really pushing him to seek solace in old habits. Just so happens he read my letter that day. And stayed sober. He said it just really affected him and made him realize he’s not staying sober just for himself, but to be the kind of man he would want his daughter to marry. That feeling stuck with him. He’s still sober. And was so touched, he stopped me to share. Which must have been really difficult for him. (Yes, I hugged him. #KylaIsAHugger). If you’re curious, here is the letter I wrote:
Well, Aaron, you did say to take up as many pages on this thing as possible, right? Well, rather than spend hours writing on the wall, I am just dorky enough to type this up at home. [insert jokes here]. No really, I can handle it.                                                                             So, while this may not be exactly what you were intending us to divulge…I feel compelled to express the true weight of my gratitude.                                                                                                     Growing up, life was…well, not ideal. Whose is though, right? Well, mine sucked in an abusive way. Men who were supposed to love me and take care of me, kiss my skinned knee and protect me from bad things in life…well, they were those bad things. I was the recipient of abuse for the first time when I was five. After that, I just got passed from one to the next. There was no father figure in my life to show me how a man was supposed to act, so logically, I picked what I knew: a man who picked up where the others left off, albeit in a more subtle way.                                                                                                                                      Depressed? Don’t be. Somewhere along the way, I not only found courage to take a stand for myself, I found myself. So…what does this all have to do **** Krav Maga? I’d like to say that it was Krav that led me to my quest of self discovery. But I found that path through some self-exploration and soul searching. I extricated myself from the type of people that’d I’d been drawn to and focused on finding me. I decided I would never be a victim again.              Enter the search for a martial art that I could afford and do in my limited time without my two young girls. Google led me to KM and I popped in for Free Women’s Self Defense, expecting a cursory look at key points. What I got was the most intense, exciting and educational hour of my life. I haven’t left since. It has been a roller coaster of a year here. I have made friends and learned skills I never thought I could learn. I have taken chances, stepped out of my comfort zone and set myself up for failure…only to succeed instead.                                                                                        In August 2011, I took and passed my level 1 test. The best 3 hours of hell I could have asked for. I am still learning. I will always “still” be learning. I learn something every class I take. Seen choke from the front thirty times…I still learn something. I learn some new technique, new twist or some new tendency I have I didn’t know about. I have different attackers who attack in different ways. I have new instructors who have a different approach or way of looking at it.                                                                                             So…thank you Terri, Aaron, H******* KM, instructors, friends, and those people who kick my ass in class. Because of all of you, I no longer believe I will never be a victim again. No, I am pretty sure at some point in my life, I will be. Maybe more than I care to speculate. However, I now know this:                                                          I will never be a complacent victim again. Ever.                                                Thank you to all
I didn't expect the letter to touch other people's lives. I just felt compelled to tell them how much of a difference they make in my life. 

I really am very touched that I made such a difference. And, that there are people that make a difference in my life as well. Some of you make a difference every day. Some in big ways, others in smaller ways. The point is—you DO make a difference in my life. Thank you for that. Thank you for the smut, snark, jackassery. Thank you for the laughs when I need them. Thank you for the virtual shoulder. Thank you for more virtual hugs than a hugger like me could ever hope for (tackle hugs, ahem…table hugs, all of them). I guess…just thank you for being my friend. 

Drop me a line. Has someone made a difference in your life? Not, me. Not fishing for that. *snicker* You don’t have to get detailed, don’t have to name names. But it would really help me to know that people are making a difference in your life as well. 


  1. I really needed to read words like these today. :)#HugstoKylatheHugger

  2. It's not always the grand act that gets the grand reaction, is it. In fact, it's more often the kind word at the right time, the single smile someone didn't know they'd get or felt would never come, that changes lives. Yes, there are people who have shown me unbelievable support and have done things, DO things, to make a difference for me. I sincerely hope I'm returning the cosmic gesture.

    Big hugs to you and your bravery.

  3. @Janice
    Then it was worth posting. If it only affects one person, it's worth it.

  4. @Denise Well said! People can be impacted by so many things. We hear about the negative a lot. In fact for my upcoming post, I'll be talking about a lot of those negatives that impact us. It's nice to share the positive impacts.

  5. I've always believed that everyone who enters our lives and plays some kind of role will make a difference, or, more aptly, be there to teach us something. It's not always something positive or big or maybe even life changing, but we can take anything and learn from it. And grow.

  6. Amanda's right Kyla. Sometimes we may not even realize the impact someone had until a long time after the fact. It just proves that we can't take for granted anyone in our lives, no matter how small a part we think they might play. Likewise, we may be impacting them and not even know it. Thanks for being brave enough to share. Proud of you! ;)

  7. I am sorry that you had to experience that kind of hurt in your life, but I'm not sorry that it's allowed you to grow as a strong, independent woman! I'm so glad that you found a way to show the world what a smart, sarcastic, beautiful person you are who deserves lots & lots of hugs :D

    I firmly believe in soulmates! Not just in the romantic sense, but in the sense that people come into our lives for a reason...friend soulmates! People that you connect with that help you grow as a person (and vice versa). I'm so glad to call you my friend :)

    Now, enough mushy shit and let's grab a beer *hehe*

  8. Kyla.... I just want to hug you (BIG HUG). That was absolutely beautiful! You made me tearful; but, I am so proud of you. I come from a less than savory background when it comes to men, as well. Thank the powers that be that gave you KM. Keep kicking some ass and getting your ass kicked, sista!!



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