Wednesday, October 24, 2012


Today I need encouragement.

I have a semester and a half left to go until I graduate.

Today I don't know how I will make it.

I pretty much want to crawl into bed and hibernate for the next six months.

This October might be the busiest I've ever had. When I sit down to work on my papers, I just want to lay my head down and sleep. My thoughts don't seem focused or coherent these days. I keep having all these bizarre thoughts. In my dreams I am frantic and constantly searching for something I cannot find, or I am perpetually late.

I've left no time for things I really want to do: things that make me feel good and charitable and whole.

I'm at a loss for what to leave out or delegate.

The rain. The election. The build up of massive amounts of work. The maleness of my surroundings. No time to write. Nobody to take my place.

And yet, saying it makes me feel so ungrateful. Today in the National Geographic I read a story about memories of sharecroppers in the eastern Arkansas during the Civil Rights era and before. Children in such abject poverty and treated with such cruelty . . . and I have the gall to say that I'm dealing with too much! I'm so very blessed in a world that is too often so ugly. Why, these days, is that not enough for me? I still feel that itching around the edges that wants to do something big and grand. And yet, at the moment, what I really want the most is to spend a day or two or seven in bed. Asleep. Impervious to dreams and troubles and contention.

If you have any stories to share about a time in your life that just seemed too hard but you somehow made it through I would love to hear them. Let me know what helped, what hurt, how you protected yourself. I am in desperate need of some perspective today.


Melanie said...

Oh yes, I've been there. Both the not thinking I'll ever get through school and the life is just too hard right now spans of days. I also understand the guilt for complaining and thinking things are hard when so many people have it so much worse. What I've learned, and what I'm sure you know in your head but maybe not in your heart right now, is that it gets better. I've been through the cycle so many times that on those days when I feel I've hit bottom (again), I just have to remind myself that as hard as things feel right now, some sort of reprieve always arrives sooner than later.

I hope my words don't sound like platitudes. I will pray for you!

Desmama said...

Was just feeling the same way today. I'm going to post a poem on my blog that kind of captures the feeling.

Kimberly Bluestocking said...

I completely relate. I know the vast majority of people have it so much worse than I do, but life still feels overwhelming sometimes.

The only advice I can think of is to pray for help and then keep putting one foot in front of the other. There is immense power in both.

And as Melanie says, things will get better. You will get through this. As Screwtape noted, we humans tend to forget about the law of undulation--when we're in the valleys of life, it feels like we'll be down in them forever. We forget that if we just keep going, we'll be back on top before we know it.

Praying for you, sister.

Scully said...

First of all, just because someone else has a difficult time, no matter how horrific, does not negate your difficulties. Especially when comparing them to you only makes your difficulties seem more overwhelming. When I was going to graduate school, I was also serving as the YSA Relief Society president and dealing with family issues stemming from my mom's death and my dad's subsequent remarriage. There was a time when I felt so exhausted, so drained that everything seemed too much and that I had absolutely nothing left to give. I don't remember doing anything particularly different to survive it, just kept plowing ahead, doing what I needed to do to survive. All the Sunday School answers apply, as do the occasional bubble bath when you can. And sometimes, it is easy to think that there is no one to pick up the slack, to take your place, even for half an hour, but there will be if you just ask. Sometimes you have to ask a person, sometimes you just have to ask Heavenly Father. But there will be a way to do it. And you will find a way to do it.

Cathy said...

Are your trials often the mirror-side of your blessings, like mine often are? Put differently, do you really want your trials gone, or does nearly every one have a magnificent silver lining that explains why you chose it, and why you would pick it up again if it were gone?

Also, my almost six year old daughter doesn't really change the maleness of our house. I think it might take another older female to do that.

I had nasal surgery and my tonsils out two days ago. Currently, my days are in tiny much longer until another pain pill...sleeping in 45 minute blocks...trying to make myself rest instead of help with children, since my husband got sick right before my surgery and the baby was diagnosed with two ear infections on Wednesday. Temps were in the 20s overnight and it will be harder to send our other three energetic kids out to play, but if we don't, they will drive us batty. But somewhere at the end of it, I should be able to breathe well for the first time in my life. In other words, I chose my trial.

Shiree said...

Nan, there were certainly months upon months that all I did was put one step in front of the other. I tried to read my scriptures and go to church and attend the temple as best as I could. And it really wasn't very good. But somehow it was enough. Even though I couldn't feel the Lord carrying me, he was. And the place he carried me to is infinitely more beautiful and wonderful than I ever could have imagined it to be. His plan for you is miraculous and He is so mindful of you! You are doing well, though you feel stretched. Wish I could watch your boys for you or bring you dinner.

Brooke said...

I just have a mini, un-dramatic example of this. Last summer I agreed to hang an art show at Caffe Ibis as part of the July Gallery Walk. I felt nervous about it, but excited, knowing it would be good for me in many ways, and great for my kids to see me work in that way. Halfway through my preparations I was completely spent, and my paintings were very mediocre. I was cursing myself for signing up to do such a crazy thing, and for awhile I was really, truly unhappy about it. But then some of my paintings started looking really pretty decent. It revitalized me. And even though it was a series of ridiculously late nights and sooooo much money spent on framing, blah, blah, the day I went to hang my show I felt AMAZING. And the opening was so much fun. And I sold a bunch of paintings which covered my framing costs almost to the dollar. So. I think even though it was painful, it was worth it to have my kids walk in and see me standing at the easel with wide eyes asking me, "Mom, what are you doing?!" Most of them had no idea that I am a "real" artist. That was cool. I think it's really common in life that we have to suffer some in order to reap the rewards. I don't even mean that in a broad, eternal perspective way. I mean it in slogging through the day to day. You'll get there. And it will be sweet.

emandtrev said...

Aw, lady! I can so relate. I honestly feel like sometimes I'm just *barely* hanging on from one day to the next. I recently pinned a quote that says something like, "God doesn't give us what we can handle, God helps us handle what we are given."

How often do we think we can't do one more thing...and then we can. He is aware of us and knows our struggles for more time, more energy, more love. It is rough being stretched so thin, I know. Just are an amazing, smart, beautiful, and talented woman. This too shall pass. You are making a valuable contribution to your family and the world. Hugs!!

P.S. I so wish I could make and bring you some pumpkin bars. :)