You’re Not a Sad Story

I’m writing this late at night which is usually a bad idea, since my thoughts can be so disjointed and my writing tends to get pretty wonky. But I want to say something:

Lately I feel like I’ve been carried out of a really terrible trial, and my heart is slowly opening up to let in the future. The annoying phrases that haunted me so much in depression mean something better, like “today is the first day of the rest of your life.” Instead of ripping me open, these words resonate in me, give me comfort.

Things are still hard, and some days I am empty, and I still hate reading my journal entries and blog posts from last semester because they dissolve my stomach, but that’s part of my life, and maybe your life is like that too. You and I, we deal. We move on. We carry our crosses. We stand together. And even when we feel alone, we’re not.

God is good. Living can be hard. Things are complicated. Hold on, keep keep keep keep keep holding on. Jesus loves you, just the way you are. There is always hope, even if you can’t see it. And I, dear reader, love you too.

Let’s do this life.

Voices

There will always be voices.

Voices that tell you what you are.

Where you’ll go.

Who you can be.

There will always be voices, and only you can choose which voices you believe.

Last week I was playing with a toddler who asked me to help him set up his train tracks in a circle. Later, while he was playing, he said to me in his sweet baby voice, “You’re so nice, Maney, you’re so nice.” And for some reason, his kind little words made my heart grow so big.

That was a voice I wanted to listen to.

He was much kinder than I am to myself.

There will always be voices, voices telling us that we aren’t worthy of love, or that our plans will fail, or we aren’t needed or wanted, or that we’re useless and worthless and bad.

Banish those voices, my dear readers. You are wonderful.

“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” -Christopher Robin

Poetry Friday: Stand

Stand

You blend in, cottage,
with your pastel friends.
They dot the hilly landscape
and brighten cloudy days.

You stand firm in the
winds and mists and webs and years,
listening to the gulls call
over hungry, icy ocean rolls.

You can’t hear the trees,
but they speak of you,
whispering to me that you,
you, cottage, are a stranger.

And no matter how bright your paint,
or sturdy your walls,
or patient your heart,
you’ll never belong.

But I watch as you stand still
and firm and constant and smile
even as trees whisper,
cold suffocates,
and mist rots your wood.

Because you understand,
and I understand,
the need to just
stand.

Poetry Friday: Train in the Dark

Train in the Dark

I am like a train
moving in the dark

People think they see me
my headlights lighting the way
in the winter blackness

but do they notice
all the baggage I drag behind
as it fades into the distorted shadows
of midnight?

People think they hear me
my shrill whistle and clacking wheels
and creaking cars

but would they notice me
if I didn’t sound the whistle to say
“I’m here”?

I fly in a straight line
I find my way when night is thick

I am like a train
moving in the dark.

More Turkeys

I don’t have much to say because I don’t feel qualified to blog lately. I’ve tried to maintain a realistic yet positive blog since December; however, some of you may have noticed that in the last month or so, my posts have taking a slightly more depressing turn. This makes sense because (and of course I didn’t realize this fully until about a week ago) I am depressed! Lol. It’s hard to not feel stupid that I, Maney, self-proclaimed “girl of depression and anxiety” did not recognize the signs. It’s more than a little embarrassing. So for those of you who are nodding knowingly right now, “I thought she might be taking a downhill turn,” you were right. Next time feel free to call me out on it.

I am currently attending a university I have heard called “Mormon Harvard.” I hate to actually write out the name because if you know, you know, and if you don’t, it really doesn’t matter. One university degree is about as good as the next, and frankly I still miss my old school. But anyway, the point of this is that at my university we do these weekly things called devotionals. Probably a few thousand students gather in a huge building and we get to listen to a great speaker for an hour. My experience of devotionals has been positive thus far. But today our speaker (Dan Clark) really struck a chord. He made me realize that I have been setting my personal expectations pretty low.

To be fair, I have an imbalance of chemicals in my brain. That’s real. But it’s more than that. Since I realized that I have been really low for the last little while, I have a footing. Like when you sink too deep in a body of water and you’re almost out of breath, but once your feet touch the ground, you find the strength to push up. Or like that story my dad used to tell me (which he denies telling me) about the donkey that fell into a pit and the farmer gave up trying to get him out and started burying it. Shovelful and shovelful of dirt went in, trying to give the donkey a proper burial. But the donkey wouldn’t have it. Every time a shovelful of dirt fell on its back, it shook it off and stepped up. By the end of the day, the donkey was able to walk out of the pit.

You’d never think a donkey would be smart enough to get itself out of a pit, would you? Okay, I can’t pretend to know your predisposed beliefs about donkeys, sorry. They don’t have the best reputation of the animal kingdom, at least in my opinion. Except for maybe the donkey that carried Mary to Bethlehem, but he/she was the exception. And speaking of animals, I actually wrote a similarly inspirational post about turkeys a while back. (I finally figured out how to put a URL into a word! #smileyface)

Well, anyway, sorry for how rambling this post is. In my defense, I can literally feel my brain straining to have complex thoughts since most of my energy lately has been spent trying to survive and hopefully find some kind of happiness.

The point: I really believe that you are a beloved child of God, Reader. Don’t set your expectations low because you think you’re a donkey or a turkey, because even they have really awesome potential. And here’s to me and you feeling happier in the future, eh?

 

Battlefield

Today is a battle and I am going to win.

If you think I’m going to fall, you are wrong wrong wrong. I have fought too hard to get to this place, this point on my mountain, and I will not move one step down.

You may think you know me, or own me, or understand what I’ve been through and where I’m going, but you don’t know the half of it.

I have felt pain to a degree that I didn’t know was humanly possible. I have survived what other people would call Hell but I wouldn’t call it that. Because I know how much harder life can be.

I have lost friends. I have lost family. I have lost myself.

But I have never let go.

Every day I wake up and I face the sun, and even if it pains me beyond words, I have not yet given up.

On days when I wanted it to end and I had the means and the desire, I held on. Because I told myself it would eventually be worth it. Honestly, sometimes I still have to remind myself this.

If you could see my strength, it would astound you.

I am so full of words and beliefs and values and potential that if you could really see it all, it would blind you.

Don’t you think that you can put me in a box, labeling me, marking me. I am above what you think you know.

And today is just another battle.

A battle for life.

A battle for liberty.

A battle for the pursuit of happiness.

A battle to be who I am and to love every piece of me.

A battle to take God’s hand and make myself believe Him, even if it doesn’t make sense.

I’m going to keep on fighting.

So you had better keep fighting, too.