Wednesday, September 25, 2013

nothing to do but do...

A phrase comes up a lot in conversation these days. I say it, my friends say it, my family members say it -- after we take turns detailing the hard things that we're facing or the stresses brought on by work, school, health, and other things, we say with a shrug and a half-sort of smile, "Eh. What can you do?"

It's as though it's a socially constructed way of saying, "Thank you for listening to my problems, and don't try to help me -- I just needed to talk."

It's true, in a lot of ways. So many things just have to be done, regardless of the difficulty or the heartache. Life doesn't stop for anyone. Unless you happen to have a billion dollars in your bank account, of course -- then you can tell the world what to do and it has to listen. Money talks a lot louder than anything else.

I keep looking at the things in my life and I'm sometimes amazed that I get anything done. I'm honestly baffled that I'm accomplishing anything at all.

Sometimes I look at other people's lives and feel grateful that I don't have their struggles. They're so strong -- sometimes it makes me feel even weaker -- I couldn't do what they're doing.

Everybody's got something. For me, and for everybody else -- despite the physical pain which grows worse by the day, the emotional issues that creep in the background, the lack of sleep due to nightmares and pain, and the immense anxiety caused by deadlines, health problems, bills, and what-have-you -- we just keep going.

Eh. What can you do?

Everything, apparently.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

counter attack...

I keep finding a thought spinning around in my head.

"Wow. Look how much you've lost this year."

In some ways, it's kind of true. I have lost a lot. Often it seems that every time I turn around, some big, awful thing happens that leaves me feeling as though I've been decked across the face. 

I've lost important, meaningful things. I've lost a lot of my freedom that comes from living on my own and having a car at my disposal all of the time. I've lost opportunities, I've lost time, I've lost money. And worst of all, I've lost people I never dreamed I would lose -- or prayed and begged the Lord to let them stay.

But amidst all of that gone-ness, there are so many things I've gained. I've gained new friendships, new opportunities, new responsibilities, new dreams, new knowledge, and maybe even new wisdom. I've gained a better understanding of the Atonement, and I've gained a greater sense of the Holy Spirit's whisperings. I've gained patience and compassion, strength and resolve. Well -- maybe less in the patience department, but more than I had before.

I feel as though I'm closer to my family and to God than I've ever been in my whole life, and that's after all of the mistakes I made.

Admittedly, I'd like to give in to the anger that keeps working it's way into my heart. I'd like to curse and cry and scream and let the whole world know how much my heart is hurting -- but I won't. I don't need to.

There are bigger, more important things in this life. I'm holding out for them.

Friday, September 13, 2013


Wednesday was like almost any other Wednesday. Except for one thing: while I was attempting to butter some French bread, I found myself slumped against the counter with no recollection of the few seconds before I fell.

The pain has been bad this week.

Thursday was much like Wednesday, minus the French bread and the passing out. The physical and emotional pain peaked. I was scared, angry, tired, and alone -- alone in the sense that I was stuck in my body and mind, and trying to get out was too exhausting.

And then, I was asked out on a date. Not just any normal run-of-the-mill homework date, which has become the standard due to our heavy workloads, but a real one. Where he called me up and issued a formal invitation; I put on a skirt, blouse, and heels, and he wore slacks with a tie; he picked me up at 7:30; I wasn't allowed to open any doors at all (usually he opens the car door for me to get inside, and I let myself out because I'm silly that way); he took me to Mimi's Cafe; and we talked for hours. And not just all of that-- he came to my door in my favorite green shirt and the jacket I got him for his birthday, holding a white rose tinged with brilliant red, a box of all dark chocolates, and strawberries with chocolate syrup for later on (our new favorite treat because we can't afford real chocolate covered strawberries, nor do we have time to make them).

A day later, I still can't entirely comprehend it all. That someone would go so out of his way for me -- to get off work, to wear the clothes I like so much, to bring gifts that mean a lot to me, and to take me somewhere so nice -- even in the face of missing valuable homework time. Because he knew I was hurting, and that things had been hard. Because he wanted to make me smile.

What's even more amazing to me is that this isn't the first time this has happened.

It's overwhelming in the best way.

Monday, September 2, 2013

too fragile for my own good...

I have a sensitive personality by nature. Commercials about homeless animals, photos of orphaned children, and the occasional man standing on the corner with a sign trigger tears. I feel for people, and animals, and sometimes I feel trapped because what little help I can give personally is less than a drop in the bucket.

That kind of sensitivity is a good thing in some ways. While it can be problematic at times, it's something I've learned to work with, instead of let it control my life. Recently, though, I've been sensitive in ways less compassionate -- meaning I find myself getting hurt a lot.

I don't know what it is, but stupid little things hurt. Comments from family members and friends or things I read keep reminding me of mistakes I've made or the goals I'm so far from reaching. It's like thinking you're moving forward, a step at a time, until you turn a corner and there's that wall again, smirking and saying, "Hey, remember me? Your old pal? You keep trying to forget me and move on -- I don't like that. Good luck walking away from me, kid."

There are reminders everywhere. Reminders of times I've failed and stupid mistakes I've made. Honestly, I feel like I'm worthless. I'm starting to think I don't deserve happiness. Which is wrong -- both of the previous lines are wrong. The thinking is wrong -- I know that. Knowing that doesn't seem to make it hurt any less, though. It's quite frustrating.

It's frustrating that no matter how many good, right things we do, the bad things creep up out of nowhere to knock us down. That no matter how hard we try to be happy, and to take care of ourselves and others, it's still ridiculously difficult to get out of bed in the mornings and face another day.