I’m having a difficult time lately, and I find myself today asking: what am I learning here?
The question I usually answer in these blog posts is, “what have I learned recently?” Past tense. Orderly. Contained.
Not this post.
Because I am deep in the trenches right now. I’m feeling the weight of strains and pressure and loneliness.
A few hopeful thoughts are helping me right now:
1. Life is hard at times naturally, and the difficulty isn’t a sign I’ve done anything wrong or made any mistakes.
2. This difficult phase will teach me something. What am I learning from it?
3. There is no innate meaning to life, so I can choose what meaning I want to give to it and take from it, including the challenges I’m facing right now.
One of the biggest sources of strain for me now is an ongoing issue that has been years in the making, with the last five months being the most consistent and intense. But it’s not new.
And I think, over the past few months, I am learning boundaries. I’m learning that I cannot save the other person, but I can save myself.
I’m learning resilience, and not relying on people who for their own reasons are unreliable. Anything I can get from them is a bonus. But I am relying much more on myself.
I’m learning patience. Seeing impatience in others is showing me how unhelpful it is. When I feel impatient, I can see myself from the outside and remind myself, “be calm.”
I’m learning perspective, and not losing it over little things.
I have not learned any of these things fully, and I’m guessing I’ll never have learned them entirely (tick!). But I can look back at the last few months and see how far I’ve come. And you know what? I need some good times so I privately celebrate that progress, right now, in this imperfect moment.
Taking the one this morning, on my way into work, to celebrate and acknowledge what I’m learning has actually been a huge boost, exactly when I needed it.
Aspects of life are still shit right now, but if I have to go through it with anyone, I’m glad I’m living this life with me. Celebrating what I’m learning gives me hope for what I will continue to learn, and I can start to see that an end to the current struggle will come eventually. Pride and hope are amazing antidote to stress and loneliness.