It’s a Beautiful Ride

When I ponder where I’ve been, how jagged and rough the road of life I have travelled; that I am now enjoying happily married life with the sweetest partner, having two healthy grown children, and enjoying the freedom to participate in hobbies such as gardening and writing that delight my heart ~ I am astonished.

With all that I am blessed with today, I feel it is my responsibility to reach out to anyone who is anywhere close to enduring the terribly rough patches as I did, and to say to you: Yes, it really does get better.

I know that when we’re IN it, words of support from others fall flat, no matter how well intended. We feel utterly alone. That is the most tragic part of ‘the blues’ – feeling like it will never end. Like others are happy but we never will be. This feeling of being misunderstood, totally alone, and ‘this is the way it will be forever’ is actually common to those who suffer blues. How ironic.

All irony aside, I believe we can get through our blues, or melancholy, much more easily by being gentle with ourselves. Do not allow any inner ‘cassette tapes’ or voices of teachers or anyone to tell you to ‘pull yourself up by your boot-straps’ and just get on with it. While I believe there is some truth in the expression ‘fake it til you make it’ – it does not ring true if the blues we are going through are deep. Sure, if we’re having a crappy day, maybe woke up a bit moody, then by all means when asked ‘How are you?’ it’s great to reply with the biggest smile you can muster, ‘I’m great. Awesome! Thanks for asking. How are you?’ This is the meaning of ‘fake it til you make it’. Fake a good mood and before long, you’re feeling better. It’s been proven.

However I have experienced very dark times, and I know this ‘fake it’ adage does not apply when the darkness is weighing heavy on our heart. Philosopher and psychotherapist Thomas Moore writes in Care of the Soul: “The soul presents itself in a variety of colors, including all the shades of gray, blue, and black. To care for the soul, we must observe the full range of all its colorings, and resist the temptation to approve only of white, red, and orange – the brilliant colors. The “bright” idea of colorizing old black and white movies is consistent with our culture’s general rejection of the dark and the gray. In a society that is defended against the tragic sense of life, depression will appear as an enemy, an unredeemable malady; yet in such a society, devoted to light, depression, in compensation, will be unusually strong.”

In Renaissance gardens it was common to include a private bower designed specifically for a person in melancholy to withdraw and feel their depression without fear of being disturbed. What an amazingly refreshing concept – to just allow, and provide the emotional space for, feeling downhearted. No forcing out of, no making wrong. Deep melancholy lingers when suppressed. In giving ourselves permission to be blue we can actually come out of it to the other side more easily and quickly. Thomas Moore goes on to say, “Because depression is one of the faces of the soul, acknowledging it and bringing it into our relationships fosters intimacy. If we deny or cover up anything that is at home in the soul, then we cannot be fully present to others. Hiding the dark places results in a loss of soul; speaking for them and from them offers a way toward genuine community and intimacy.”

A quote that helps me in times of sadness is, ‘God sometimes lays us flat on our back, that we may look skyward.’ Our hardships are a prescription written from On High explicitly for our highest healing and development. I know the broken road brought me to the right time and perfect place. All of us travel the broken road to end up just where we are meant to be. It is all worth it. It does get better.

 

View Care of the Soul, by Thomas Moore, at Amazon.com by clicking here.
Image source sweetstuffcalledlove.tumblr

12 thoughts on “It’s a Beautiful Ride

    • You are such a sweet beautiful soul as well, dear one. Your kind comment here warms my heart and makes my day! :) I even updated my settings just for you since I know you love smiley faces. :) Smiles for you!

  1. Yes, thanks for posting. We do need to honor our feelings, all of them, even the ones we perceive as negative. It’s all part of our experience here. Many people in our culture don’t handle depression/ sadness well. They often won’t know what to say to someone who is sad. They don’t want to face it and will ignore it or try to change it. I went through a period of depression a number of years ago while going through a divorce and I’d have people I didn’t even know pass by me, see that I looked unhappy, and make a comment like, “Smile, it can’t be that bad.” I actually used to consider that rude. How do they know it’s not “that bad”? How do they know that perhaps someone close to me didn’t just die? Who do they want me to smile for, them? They don’t even know me. – - Depression/ sadness are rejected on so many levels in our society. Perhaps because those people who are so uncomfortable when they are faced with it in others, have not honored their own feelings of sadness when they arise in themselves and instead choose to just “get on with it” as you wrote. – - Okay, I unloaded a lot here, didn’t intend to do that. I realize I went in a specific direction here with it, it’s just not often that I see anyone bring up this subject. Thanks. :)

    • Your comment here is wonderful and I appreciate it immensely. I agree it’s a topic not often brought up. I feel it is healthy to accept all parts of our self, and this experience of living life. So much to learn. I saw a bumper sticker that made me laugh out loud: “OH NO! Not another learning experience!” Your very good point of being ordered to smile reminded me of this funny yet tragic statement. Like the cringing of hearing someone say: Well at least you can chalk it up to a learning experience! So many people can be uncomfortable with anything other than cheery smiles. Makes it extra hard on one who is in ‘the blues’. Curiously enough, all we need do around someone in deep sadness or blues is accept them. Just be there. Sit with them. Make some tea. Believe in their own inherent strength to get through this without unsolicited advice. Look at me, going on! Your thought provoking ideas and comments always get me going! Bless your wise sweet heart Rev Dani Lynn :) Namaste. Gina

    • Paul, that is so nice of you. I appreciate your inclusion of this blog in your list of nominees. That delights my heart, and I will follow the steps shortly. Thank you so much! Gina

  2. A beautiful, beautiful post full of hope and yet so full of honest truth. Life comes in many shades – each one necessary for a season. Thank you for sharing from your heart. Your story is an inspiration. I felt lifted reading your words. Many blessings to you my dear Gina. Hugs, Sharon

    • Thank you very much, dear Sharon! I’m delighted you noticed and appreciated my wee writings from my heart. If I can inspire, that cheers my heart, for that is why I am here. Sharing my stories with hopes that they might help to inspire. And your blog certainly inspires me as well. Hugs, Gina

Share your thoughts:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s