You know that place. It’s where darkness surrounds and pierces you and you feel like running away from your own mind, but you’re trapped in what feels like tortuous pain. Negative voices overpower the whispers of encouragement struggling to get to your ears and heart. You heave one sigh after the other or if you’re like me, an exasperated f***. You probably can guess that I was just in this place. About an hour ago to be exact. But I’m a little better. So much better that I’m actually writing this blog post. Let me tell you that this is nothing short of a miracle because all I wanted to do before was bury myself in my bed sheets and disappear into some imaginary black hole. And yet, here I am. Writing.
I have two scenes left to write in a book before it’s complete and I couldn’t muster the creative energy and willpower to finish it, so this bothered me to no end. Insert cries of frustration. But that’s not what brought me to that dark place I mentioned above. Let’s just say I’m in a point in my life (I’m twenty-six) where I thought I’d have my own place, a steady full-time job, and relatively normal social life. I have none of these things and the pressures to have my shit together have grown so big that they’re overshadowing what really matters to me. Passion. Dreams. Love. All the things that run on faith and hope and perseverance and a big dash of craziness. They don’t pay bills, get me an apartment, or fund weekend getaways with friends. However, I can’t let them go. Them meaning my dreams to become a published writer, create a small independent media company, and a youth community organization. I also want to get my doctorate in sociology, which I’m working on right now. *Raises fist in air.* Damn this endless application process!
Something in me just won’t give up on these dreams and replace them with something normal and potentially death inducing—you know, a real job that will actually get me the things I feel I need to be a successful member of society.
Anyway, all those material things shouldn’t have to define my life, who I am, and what I can accomplish in the future. I’m stuck on the bigger picture and it often gets me the label of fool or loser, so I draw on my faith in God to get me through the slumps. I gradually realize that I’m wallowing in misery for no good reason. I have clothes on my back, food to eat, shelter against the cold, and a good brain between my ears. I’m pretty much equipped and ready to go and conquer the world. As long as I don’t lose hope and faith, then I can keep going. I have something to live for; I have something to keep me motivated.
So, if you’re ever that place you know so well, just know everything will be okay. Remember what you’re about, the dreams you want to see come true, and do something, anything, like writing a blog post. It’s not so much that you’re getting your mind off whatever is putting you in that place, but it’s more like you’re channeling that negative energy into something else so that it becomes positive. For me that outlet is writing and I can feel myself healing already. Hope has returned no matter how small because you don’t need that much to get going because that’s just how powerful it is.
How about you? What do you find hope when you’re in a dark place? Would love to hear your thoughts.