Struggle to be

No one likes to struggle.

Well, no one I’m familiar with anyway.

Struggling is hard. It is uncomfortable. It means things are difficult, and possibly painful. It means sadness, melancholy, it means the darker side of life. It paints a cloudy picture of various shades of gray, where life loses passion, vibrancy and color, and is consumed with the enormity of the situation at hand.

When I am struggling, it means I am giving something power in my life that I shouldn’t.

Fear. Insecurity. Doubt. Anger. Resentment. A bad job. A toxic relationship. A huge character defect.

I’m not saying that without any of those negative emotions there would be no struggle, however in my own experience I can look back on times of struggle and recognize that I was trying to hold onto something I should let go of. A person, control, a job, an old idea, a judgment, something, anything.

But struggle can be positive. It means I’m not giving up, not letting my old behavior win, not letting what used to be overcome what is.

I used to struggle with buying groceries. Putting gas in my car. Finding money to buy alcohol. Or anything else really.I struggled trying to maintain a terrible relationship because he had me convinced that if I left him no one else would want me. I used to struggle to wake up, struggle to go to sleep. Struggle to find normalcy. I struggled to feed my cats, who almost always ate before I did. I sought things to make me feel better, and I struggled more.  I struggled alone.

I still struggle every day. I struggle with self-worth. Keeping my mouth shut. Being nice to myself. Eating food without guilt. Being nice to others. Tolerating others bad behavior. Not flipping people off on the road, getting up to shower when I want to stay in bed for another 10 minutes, making good choices. Talking to a higher power and believing that I am heard. These are daily struggles for me.

The difference is, today I don’t struggle alone. Sometimes I still struggle with the things I used to, but for the most part my challenges in life have changed. I call them challenges because they are able to be overcome.

Struggle does not mean failure. It does not have to mean treading water, or standing still, or moving backwards. Struggle means there’s some fight left.

So keep fighting.

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