8 years of struggle changes with one step

September 2006 will forever be etched in my brain. For 8 long years, that day held power over me. I never in my life expected to to be battling, myself, day in and day out for 8 and a half long years.  

The sexual abuse I experienced, most definitely ignited some demons that I didn't have the knowledge to combat the urge to hurt myself, and in turn hurt others. I thought I was the only one who felt like this, and that would never get better.

TODAY, I start on another chapter, and it’s a journey of over 9000 kms, but more importantly it’s a journey to start new conversations surrounding sexual abuse, mental illness, and addiction. Today Canadians can live reassured that you are not alone, even if you feel like you're the only one. I’m not doing this for fame nor fortune, but to make sure I do my part as a Canadian, and also a human being. No one should ever feel like they are the only one. and hopefully in the next 6 months we will establish that in Canada.

We are the change, collectively as Humans to save lives by simply having a conversation. I will tell you right now, If someone came to my high school back in ‘99 and said that this had even a potential to happen to me, or any of my friends , I may not be in this position today. I have struggled. I have been at the deep pits of my own personal prison, and all because that's all I felt like I deserved. I  deserve so much more than living in a car, slamming cheap whiskey back, hurting myself and everyone around me. This summer I will give the power that I’ve gained away to all the Canadians I meet, in hopes to enhance their own lives.

Today is the day, that you never need to feel alone anymore. Im doing this for all Canadians who felt like giving up, who felt worthless, hopeless. You NEVER have to feel that way again. You are no longer alone. If you have the will to fight for your life, than the life you work for, will be forever worth it. You can go through struggle, and that's exactly it, Through. You no Longer have to stay in your shame, no longer have to feel embarrassed to reach out.

The strongest thing i ever did was speak out. I am unbelievably grateful to be alive today. there are 86,400 seconds in every single day. the sun will rise every day, whether that's out where we can see it, or above the clouds. its still shining. I Can’t thank you all enough for saving my life, in turn saving some others as well. my gratitude will be a cornerstone to my recovery, and that’s what makes me get that power back from September 2006.

#MuchLove  Paulie