The Recovering Farmer

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Give Me Strength

Finally it is here. And, I might add, I am giving it some credit where credit is not due. It is not here every day but most days. I am talking summer. Finally the leaves are out. The grass is green. The birds are chirping. The sun comes up early in the morning. You get lots of sunlight in the evening. This is it. Summer has arrived. Now to enjoy it. Oh, and by the way, in just over a week the days start getting shorter, so you better start enjoying it.

Over the course of the last week or two I have seen and heard about so much heartache. A niece that was deported from a country where she was helping so many. A friend of a friend who died much too early in life because of the dreaded C. A mother who is slowly but surely losing her fight with life. A friend who cannot overcome the debilitating effects of surgery. A friend who struggles to get over a debilitating financial loss. In a much more publicized event you have the cops that were murdered in cold blood on the east coast. I suspect one and all could list numerous people who are fighting difficult challenges.

I sometimes wonder whether it is my age. Do these “bad things” seem to occur more often than they used to? Is it because our world is shrinking, in large part because of technology, and we know more people than we used to? Are issues getting more serious? So many questions. So few answers.

Each one of us that is facing challenges feels alone. Feels isolated. Wondering how anyone could relate. And, often times, it is difficult to relate. How can I feel the pain if I have never been there? I recall in early 2010 talking to people about stress. One person suggested that their stress was nothing compared to what Haiti was experiencing after their devastating earthquake. We must be careful when we go down that road.

Regardless of what is happening in other countries, regardless of what other people are going through, the reality is that we may be feeling an unbearable pain. Physical and emotional pain. Pain brought on by circumstances way beyond our control. And it matters not what the other person may be experiencing, our pain feels bad. It becomes an overwhelming burden to bear. We are not sure how to overcome.

Read an interesting article today about realistic thinking. I find myself often filled with anxiety and worry, not because of today, because of tomorrow. The future. What will it bring? All the “what ifs”. We desire answers to these “what if” questions because we think without those answers we are lost. Doomed.

The article explains why we don’t find the answers we want or need. It talks about “catastrophizing about the future”. We dwell on a perceived future. A future that appears to be hopeless. We feel but don’t think. There are times we must acknowledge that our future will not be what we want it to be but that we do have a future nonetheless. We must allow ourselves to think. That gives us the power to cope. That will provide the opportunity to thrive rather than to merely survive. Make it a good one.

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