Cycle of Life

So, I was trying to get through this week without becoming too engrossed by negative feelings. I was trying to get through moments by trying to improve the moments. I used prayer and trying to create meaning through the hardships. I managed to do some difficult things and keep going in spite of my hurts.

I feel as though I often urge myself and others to keep going. I am struggling with this concept. It is an everyday struggle. I ask what the point is. I ask why I should bother. I want to know what is waiting out there for me. I ask why nobody cares. I ask why I am alone in my struggles.

I want companionship and someone to listen to me every day. I want to be held and reassured that better days are coming. I want to be told that I am safe and loved. I want to believe in a future for myself.

I think of the cycle of life: joy, mourning, joy, mourning… The cycle of life to death to new life. I believe it is Ecclesiastes that speaks of the fleeting nature of time and experiences.

Time marches on, as the song goes. There are so many references to the passing of time and experiences. We cannot hold onto one specific moment; it shifts and if we allow it, our understanding and pain and joy will shift too. We are not without the ability to experience more than one thing in the moment. Proverbs explains that “even in laughter, the heart may ache and joy may end in grief” (14:13). The human experience is varied and rich and full of joy and sorrow.

So, this week as I ruminated on negative things, I had to remind myself of good things. This is not always the easiest of things to do. It does involve gratitude and a reflection outside of the self.

I was blessed with a new nephew last week and was able to hold him this week and spend time with my siblings. There are four of us and we rarely all get together, but today, all of us sat around the small table in the foyer and talked while passing around the baby and annoying the next generation of my family.

This week, I also really pushed myself in my personal goals. I submitted to two journals and am hoping to be published. It may not happen, but it will definitely never happen if I don’t take a chance and submit. It will not happen if I give up my writing.

Over the past few months, I have been giving up. I have felt that everything is pointless and that there was really no point to trying to live life to the fullest anymore. I just didn’t see the point. I have been depressed and manic and full of self-loathing. However, it was made clear to me that I have been comparing myself to the wrong me. I was comparing myself to who I wanted to be by now, not who I wanted to be as a whole person.

I wanted to have my first novel already published. I wanted to be established, have my own home, be in a healthy relationship, have a steady job… The list went on and on about all of the successes I expected to have achieved by this point in my life.

I’ve hit none of those goals.

Instead, I am filing for disability and trying to get published and just trying to survive. I live with my parents and have a car that is more sass than function and I am disappointed. I have been hospitalized probably over 30 times for depression, borderline personality disorder, mania, and anorexia…

All I can say is: I am trying. I don’t want this to be the end. I want more. I am aiming for more. I don’t want to just give up. I want to continue to do difficult things. Some days, I can concentrate and do work. Most days, I can barely edit or write a sentence. I do the best I can, but I want to do better.

This is where it comes in that I aim to keep going. It is difficult and some days, I just want to say, “NO MORE!” However, that will not help me. So, I must pray and encourage myself to keep going. I also must remember the people in my life that love me and want to see me succeed.

Keep going my dear friends. The end is not yet here and life begins anew even in our brokenness.

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