Yeah, it’s a Sugarland song, but that’s not what I’m talking about here. If I wasn’t trying to keep this as polite as possible, the title to this post would have been Sh*t Happens. It happens. It does. Whatever “it” may be for you…well, things aren’t always going to go your way. What happens to you in life is not what matters. What matters most is how you choose to respond to what life throws at you. That is the true test of who you are.
Everyone responds in their own way to circumstances, but tell me this: who do you wish to be more like? The person who, when confronted with difficult circumstances, completely falls apart and becomes hopeless and despairing, convinced nothing will work out for them ever again, that what they want more than anything in the world is impossible?
Or the person who, even though they are completely overwhelmed by whatever crappy circumstances life has given them, does their best to remain positive and find a way out of their situation, even if that means forcing a smile and “faking it ‘til you make it”?
I know which one I want to be, which one I’m struggling to be on a day-to-day basis. This has been a rough week for me. An extremely rough week. What I really want to do is curl up in a ball somewhere and ignore the world—and even more importantly, everyone in it. But that’s not healthy. So, instead, I get out of bed each morning, determined that I will not be sad all day. I turn to my friends, the people who matter most to me in life, the people who will love me no matter what, and they give me the support and encouragement I need to keep going. I do everything I have to during the day, but I also make a concentrated effort to do at least one little thing that I want to, that makes me feel better. Something just for me, no matter how small.
Sure, there’s at least one moment every day that I break down into tears, but I won’t let those moments run together and become interminable. I won’t let this break me. I refuse. Is this what I wanted from my life? No! Oh, such a resounding “no”…but it’s what I’ve got. So I’ll make it through, and I’ll do the best I can do, no matter what. I believe everything happens for a reason. Someone asked me recently if believing that made me feel better. No. It doesn’t. Sometimes, life still sucks, even though I believe said suckiness is happening for a reason. Even though right now, maybe I can’t see the forest for the trees.
It will get better. And the people who love me will still be there for me through it all. That’s what they’re there for, after all.
I will not go gentle into that good night! (A phrase that means enough to me that I got it tattooed….)