I was super impressed with the loving, respectful relationship that I saw between Anne and her awesome mom a year after they attended camp to get help. I asked Anne some questions about her tremendous progress and how happy she and her mom were. Months later she responded:
What Made Such a Huge Difference?
Hello Nancy! You had asked me a series of questions including what made me decide to change, things that helped, things that didn’t help, etc. I apologize that it has taken me so long to respond. I didn’t forget about it, but I really wrestled with the question of when I decided to change, or what made me decide to change. The main reason I really wrestled with this question is that I was trying to pinpoint an exact moment in which I decided to change, and was it a sudden miraculous change. For me, that was definitely not the case. I struggled intensely, swaying between wanting to change and believing I could change, to throwing in the towel and working as hard as I could to destroy any previous healing I had accomplished. One moment I can definitely pinpoint as a moment of healing is when we did Snuggle Time at your Camp. That was the first time I had ever truly felt a connection to my mom. Looking back on the moment, it was such a beautiful moment. In the moment, while it was beautiful, it felt really scary and kind of painful. This was something I had never experienced and I had no idea what to do. For one of the first times, I had no idea what to do. Learning to let mom love me, and learning to love her was not a one-time “I got this” kind of moment. It was a journey. I messed up many times and pushed her love away, but in the end, I chose love. I kept choosing love. I keep choosing love. And that is what has made me change.
Anne’s Advise to Other Children and Teens who Struggle
My advice to someone struggling on the same journey I was on would be: “Change isn’t a one-time deal. Change is a journey, and like any journey, you’ll fall. You may get hurt. But that’s life. Life isn’t perfect. Life is messy. Life can hurt sometimes. Keep going. Keep choosing life. Keep choosing love. Keep choosing change. You got this. “