No offense to anyone, but I hate being tagged for things in the blogging world, mostly because it feels chain letter-y and those things creep me out.
But Jerrod tagged me in this Hope Blog Relay and threatened very mean things if I refused to participate , mostly because Melanie threatened very mean things if he dropped the blogging baton. I just couldn’t live with the guilt.
Okay, I probably could, but I’ll give this a shot anyway.
The gist is you write about hope and then pass it along. Snark aside, this was hard. Like, “I don’t want to do this and I’m going to throw a great big tantrum” hard. Why? Because most days I feel there is there is no hope for me, so writing about it feels like an exercise in futility.
Well, I’ve written about depression multiple times, so it’s not like I don’t have much to say. I have a lot to say, but I’ve already said it before. For those who don’t want to click on the links, here’s a recap:
I don’t choose to be depressed.
I don’t wake up and conscientiously make a decision to already wish I could go back to bed. I don’t isolate and choose not to just “snap out of it” or to be so OCD that now my body has gone from whispering warnings to screaming satanic-like shouts.
While I could go on about the health things as of late, I’m not sure this is the place or the post. I’ll simply say that they add to the whole “absence of hope” thing.
But this relay isn’t about that—it’s about having hope.
So I thought about writing a funny or inspirational piece using other people’s stories and the choices they’ve made that have inspired hope in others. Then I called bullshit on myself.
Because while I’m sure that would be lovely, it would also be a bit of a cop out. And as comfortable as feeling like crap can become, I’m tired of ignoring the fact that hope can exist for me too and that every day I have a choice.
I can choose to own it.
I can choose to quit acting like hope is this foreign concept that applies to the whole world except me.
I can choose to admit that while there are physical barriers, I don’t help myself like I should.
I can choose to reach out to friends, family and doctors again without feeling like it makes me weak.
I can choose not to wait for something or someone to come and do all the work for me, to change the course of my sometimes tumultuous path.
Will I choose all these things? I don’t know.
I’ve said it all before and it still kind of feels like a crap shoot. If I was reading this I would probably be rolling my eyes and saying, “Good lord, woman. How is this hopeful? Eat more, quit exercising, smile and get yourself some serious drugs.”
OK. I probably wouldn’t think that about anyone else, but that’s how I feel. In fact, I didn’t even want to write this at all. It sounds whiny and like I’m rambling on when all I want to do is delete this and post something funny.
But I choose to be honest today.
I choose to admit that I want to have hope and deserve to be healthy again.
And I choose to pass that along.
For those of you who actually stuck around until the end of this thing, gold star for you today! I promise more “normal” ramblings next time, but today I was passed the baton, and as part of the relay I’m required to pass it along.
While many bloggers have already been tagged, there are a couple that I want to feel forced to participate (but no obligation, of course.)
Nichole at MichonMichon
Dana at The Kitchen Witch
Cara at Fork and Beans
Lance at My Blog Can Beat Up Your Blog
Jen at When Pigs Fly
If anyone else wants to join in, please feel free and continue this thread with anything about hope. You can even add that fun little graphic up there (not me smoking a piece of asparagus, but the relay button thing.)
And in my final act as freaking Pollyanna, tell me one thing about hope in the comments. What does the word mean to you?
coo…so i just blog about hope? hope is the theme?
Yup. Click on the “Melanie” link if you want better details. I figured I rambled enough 😉
I read this morning something like 17 million people had applied for the 65,000 available jobs. I’ve been looking for over a year. I’ve only had 3 interviews. But I know I’ll find something awesome soon.
That is my sense of hope for now.
I also hope your health stuff will magically take care if itself before I land the dream job… See? I’m putting your needs before mine. Kommbaya my love, koombaya!
We all do what we can to help ourselves and have hope that it all will work out, regardless of the situation. Rock on, sister friend. You know that you’re destined for greatness 😉
your serious posts feel like you go inside my head and pull out what I’m holding close so no one else will know…Seriously creepy to read for me..I haven’t been hopeful about anything is so long that I don’t even remember what it feels like.
It can be easy to think that being numb is just normal, but I (we) have to hope it’s not and believe others-especially reading these “hope” posts-that something more is out there. I’m not naturally optimistic, as you know, but if something’s not working you change it. You should write about it, whatever “it” is.
Abby, gold stars to YOU for doing this whole thing, too. I was worried that it would devolve into something similar to a chain letter (oh, lord, help us), but my dream was that we could weave together a big, beautiful picture that can help us all get up in the morning. I think that’s happening. It’s pretty bad ass. And I’m crying a lot, so, you know…whatever that means.
I’ve read some of the posts and think you’ve done something pretty amazing. While I’m not usually into the whole “rainbows and unicorns farting confetti” thing, there’s some beautiful writing out there. I’m not crying, but I am grateful that sparks are still out there. Thank you for that 😉
Here’s mine. 163 words about my blonde “Hope”
Damn, that’s fast!
*crying* I’m proud of you Abby. You do deserve it, this is a huge step. Now the choice is to make it happen. Whoa. Nope. It sounds nice on paper, in your head, but yah, will you? I know I am a broken record, but you know I understand fully your awareness of choice and your oft inability to choose “right.” Your brain doesn’t work correctly, regarding. You know this. Maybe let someone else make the choice(s)? Chose to stop choosing. Put yourself where there is no choice.
Then hey, if it goes bad, at least you can blame someone ELSE?
I love you love you love you. Choosy bloggers choose to listen to their blogger buddies!
Hope…hope is in my faith that God has me completely, and that the grief and pain won’t take that knowing away. That I’ll always have that strange and wonderful peace in the midst of the storm.
Hope is that I say the right things to a person I care about to help her choose and keep hoping.
You know my thoughts all too well 😉 I think you should write about hope.
Hope…to me hope is something that allows us to have an overall good feeling about our life, heck, about our existence, that things will improve and that good things will happen.
I also have some personal issues that involve hope, I really do HOPE to someday be prescribed some type of drug that will allow me periods of concentration that allow me to actually finish a thought or action without being distracted.
I like your definition.
I admire this post – it’s honest, and I have the same problem with writing something serious, so I understand how difficult it can be to write sans snark. I also understand about the hopelessness, which doesn’t make a post like this any easier. Well done, my friend.
Thank you for putting your thoughts on paper, all the remarks, and Pat – she wrote my answer………..
You may have reluctantly taken the baton – but your handled it with grace and style worthy of a 1950’s beauty queen twirling fire for her pageant talent performance.
Unrelated. I totally wanted to be a baton twirler when I was little. However, I threw up a metal baton and it landed right on my eye socket, giving me a nasty black eye and a headache. That was the end of that.
those incidents ended a lot of twirling careers.
Hope. It is believing that you are here for a purpose, so the bastard you raped you and left you 21 years ago, a ruined person, would get to see you with his own eyes, that you were not destroyed by his actions. It is believing that we turn out okay despite our histories and herstories. That we are all somehow bizarrely connected. That we will land where we are supposed to land with the right people. I have hope. I do.
“It is believing that we turn out okay despite our histories and herstories. That we are all somehow bizarrely connected. That we will land where we are supposed to land with the right people.”
I love this. So well said.
A refreshingly honest post. As someone who struggles with Depression as well, I know all too well what hope, or rather lack of hope, feels like. To me, hope is knowing that somehow, someway, you will eventually drag your sorry ass out of the tunnel of darkness that you’ve managed to wedge yourself into. Hope has a funny way of eluding me most times, but it’s sadistic like that. It seems to always wait to show itself until the last possible moment. Frankly, hope can be a real a-hole.
Agreed. But I would add that you don’t always “wedge yourself into” that tunnel of darkness. Sometimes you’re shoved there instead. But it’s seeing those little glimmers of light at the oddest possible moment that I suppose are the things that keep us going. Thanks for your comment, my friend!
Thanks for being real Abby.
There’s so much I could say, SO MUCH, but I’ll keep it concise.
I think your ‘hope’ is bigger than you could ever know.
Just like your open, honest and beautiful heart.
Love you, my friend.
I don’t struggle with depression, and I am thankful for that. But when I was suffering through postpartum anxiety, I had a very hard time grasping hope in the middle of the night when I was exhausted and scared. Now, hope means remembering all the wonderful people I have in my life who helped me through that and would help me again, anytime. Hope is love.
“But I choose to be honest today. ”
Good for you. That is usually always the hardest thing, isn’t it?
Funny how the Universe sometimes aligns itself in weird ways. I could have read this yesterday, but didn’t. I’m glad I didn’t until right now. I had a mini-epiphany this morning while jogging. It’s hard enough for me to share girly wiggly feelings with my wife, let alone strangers on the internet, so bare with me if this doesn’t come out right.
I like how much of this post talks about action. BEING honest. Hoping. Doing something. My epiphany this morning came while a song from long ago would not stop repeating in my head. “.. I will Rejoice and be Glad, I will Rejoice and be Glad…”
I realized those words tell me I have to do something. Those are verbs I need to perform. Not adjectives that get magically bestowed upon me by someone else while I wait for them. When things seem to get too hard or I’m just going through the motions like a robot wondering where all the crazy sappy happiness is you see on TV…. now I’ll remember I need to work at it and start acting that way even if I’m not feeling it yet.
I will Rejoice and be Glad.
So, thanks for the synergy.
Exactly. I think so often we get caught up thinking that we can THINK our way out of certain situations when in reality, it really takes action. In fact, in my case, I have to take certain actions even though I think the complete opposite is what I should do at times. It’s actions first and a huge leap of faith. Thank you so much for this comment. 🙂
Shorter Me: “Fake it ’til you can Make it.” 🙂
Have a great day!
I hope for happiness in your future.
Abby, Thank you for digging down deep and sharing this. Hope can be hard to come by, as I know well from my unmedicated, undiagnosed bipolar years. To me, the hope ahead is for more sharing of these stories, less stigma, more availability of help, and more people unafraid to own their illness. xoxo Cindy
I love this comment so much. XOXO
My friend: as someone who frequents and has frequented despair all too often, I can say with 100% honesty that there is hope. But man, when you’re stuck, it can be so hard to see.
I know the struggle you write of: wanting to give inspiration without always feeling it yourself. I post a lot of inspirational stuff on Facebook, but I never want to lose my authentic voice. That’s what I’m known for.
I’m glad you were honest about where you’re at. And I hope you slip on out of that place and start soaring again.
I can so relate to this post. Half of the time when I’m writing my hopey posts I feel them when I write them, but by the time I post them I’m a blubbery miserable mess. My mood swings are bad. That’s why I try and write multiple posts when I’m feeling up. ‘Cause I feel whiney too when I write the occasional post on what’s really going on, when I feel like the world is collapsing in on me. So thanks for being brave and writing this, ’cause that’s what it is. It’s brave. Don’t ever forget that. I adore you.
Now let me go write something about unicorns puking rainbows while shitting marshmallows.
i’m glad you did this. Your hope will be passed along to so many others, because its real, its truth!
Have you ever read the blog Hyperbole And A Half? If not, you should. Especially the most recent post and drawings about depression.
Of course! I actually referenced her in a post that I linked back to here (http://abbyhasissues.com/2012/03/14/riding-out-the-wave/). She hasn’t surfaced in a long time, but tweeted something a few weeks ago that she was just taking time to get help (and writing a book.) Love her.
Okay, honesty, right now. I started getting really weepy during your post, especially since I’m going through my own stuff right now. Then, I thought, “she’s going to let me off the hook and not include me.” Then, I thought, “if she doesn’t include me I’m going to feel more weepy.” Then, you added me at the end. Then, I thought, “shit, I don’t want to write one of these posts.” But, the funny thing is that I told myself before I read this that I was going to get something written tomorrow on my site. And, the whole hope thing segues quite nicely into it.
All I’m going to say right now is that you are inspiring me. I’m going to be brave tomorrow and write. I better push publish before I change my mind.
I’m emailing you, but there’s a reason that I tagged you. Simply because you are you. Can’t wait to read it.
Yay. Be brave. I’m a lil weepy too.
I am so feeling you and this today. For realz, yo. Especially this: “I don’t help myself like I should.” I know I wrote about my own ish with this, what, months ago? Yet what has changed? Mmmmhmmmm. Time to own it instead of ignore it – and do all. these. other. things. to pretend all is well. If you can do it, I can do it.
Thanks for your comment, as I KNOW you’re a woman of action. I’m thinking I need to do another post about how hope is one thing, but actions are another. That one might just be brewing…
This whole connection business is a crazy, crazy thing. This was the perfect post. Being honest online is one thing. Being honest with yourself online is another. Like I told Lizzy, there was a reason why I picked you three and this post is why I picked you.
From one that totally gets what you are putting down here, thank you my friend.
Just got tagged, and fighting the post, but knowing it needs to be done. Right? one by one, change the world.
love you, Abby.