Choosing my Struggles.

When I woke up on Wednesday morning, I wasn’t up for much of anything. My bed had never felt so comfortable, and I just wanted to close my eyes and keep dreaming about a life devoid of stress…

I had to drag myself out of my house and force myself to hop on a bus with people who offered me a glare for taking up two seats with my bags and exhaustion. I didn’t mind because I was patting myself on the back for getting out of bed and making it this far.

I arrived at school, sat down on the couch, and cried like a baby. I didn’t really know why I was sulking but it felt good to let my insecurities flow like rushing river, but then I couldn’t stop crying. My mind was in a feedback loop – thoughts circled  over and over again, like a fan except with no ‘off’ switch. The walls begun to close in and I wondered why I had to be the one to suffer like this… yes, the “self sorrow” had kicked in.

Suddenly, my mom called. Her voice offered comfort while we came up with a plan to get me through my day. She asked me, “which stresses can you control today?  Which ones can you tackle head on?” The phone line was quiet for a moment while I thought hard about why my brain was making me panic. My eyes dried quickly as I said goodbye and spoke to my teacher about what was bothering me.

Eventually, my heart slowed enough to let me think properly. I told myself to breathe and scolded myself the same way I scold my little sister when she wakes up grumpy… “You can decide right now, whether to make this a good day or a bad day.”  I find it ironic how I’m able to give others such good advice, but when it comes down to giving myself advice, I ignore it. I was set on living out the rest of my day in a bad mood.

Later that morning, we were given an excerpt from a book titled “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F***.” I groaned.

( The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*** by Mark Manson.)

I wasn’t feeling optimistic. I wanted to remain in my perspective of “I have such a bad life. ” It was easier to remain in that mind set than to try and turn my day around.

Something caught me off guard while one of my peers read out the excerpt.  “You have to be in love with the struggle.” I didn’t understand the words right away to the point where I re-read the phrase many times. I tried to understand my struggles. What are my struggles? What pain is worth it? How could I have never thought about this before?

I thought about my depression first. I had to suffer through 4 years of pain to reach the peak of happiness. Was it worth it? Yes. Did I love the struggle? No. I hated the struggle, but I loved where it guided me. I love that it proved to me that in life  I can experience happiness. I love how hard I worked and the coping mechanisms I learned through the years of reaching the peak. I didn’t understand it at the time of suffering but I fell In love with the thought of being happy and healthy which made the struggle worth it. The suffering would sometimes bring awards, like pushing through the day or being able to calm myself down. I fell In love with those moments of self- improvement.

This excerpt from the book reminded me of all of the times that I started a project and never finished. I thought about passions that I created and lost because the end product was no longer interesting or the story leading up to the end got boring. From playing with Barbie’s when I was 7 years old to dancing my heart away to win a scholarship, I was reminded of all the times I lost the love for the end product in the fight to reach it.

Within these lost passions, I found new ones. I finished projects and kept going because in my mind as a semi-adult there is no end product to life. It isn’t like finishing an art project in grade 3 or learning how to blow bubbles. I don’t have an end goal… I guess maybe to be happy but I’m expecting to keep loving the passions I create.

So I guess I’ll keep getting out of bed.


( Excerpt from “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F***”)



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