Thursday, August 18, 2005

Hope

I wonder how many people in the world are afraid of hope like I am. Ms. N and I were discussing this today. She said I had to have hope in order to move towards wellness. I told her that hope has always betrayed me in the past and I'm too afraid to try and grab onto it now. Too afraid to allow myself to be seduced by it again.

To me hope signifies suffering. You hope and pray something will happen, you work towards that goal and desired output, but in the end all you experience is failure, rejection, humiliation. Hope means setting yourself up for more pain and suffering.

People have always told me that if I focus on the desired outcome, focus in on the positive, I will flourish in having my dreams fulfilled. Things I want will come to fruition. And not just material things but also states of mind. I believed that for a long time. I saw people around me succeeding by holding onto the hope of something good to come. They were getting their needs met, both physically and mentally. So I thought there was some truth to what I was being told. Over time though I found that it didn't apply to me.

Everything I've ever hoped for in my life has never become a reality. No matter how hard I worked, no matter how long I held onto the positive thoughts, no matter how much self-cheerleading I did. This contradicts all the naysayers that think I set myself up to fail from the beginning by not believing in my abilities or really working hard. I tried. Sometimes I tried for years, unwilling to give up a particular hope. But all my trying has been for naught.

So I must ask myself, why am I still here? If life has nothing to offer me, why am I still breathing?

5 Comments:

Blogger borderline savvy said...

You're right Sid. One of the tools in DBT is called Radical Acceptance, where you accept things exactly as they are right now. I think that's something you might consider...accepting reality as it is--I mean REALLY accepting it.

From my Buddhist background, I am afraid I have to disagree with your therapist about hope. I agree that hope causes suffering. But I also know that if you continue to put positive actions into the world, positive things will come back to you. It's a continuous process. It's what Buddhists call karma. I believe that you have put out a lot of good into this world, Sid. I mean look at your daughter and how well adjusted she is despite you being so sick. That takes guts and a lot of positive action to create such a positive result.

Just like I need to right now, try Radical Acceptance, Sid. And have FAITH that if you continually put out positive things into the world, they are going to return back to you. You also need to develop an eye to seeing the positives when they return and acknowledge them -- make a big deal over them. It's too easy for people like you and me to glance past something positive, with a grumpy remark like "it's about time that happened! I've waited long enough." Maybe you can try to name five positives about yourself every day. But the only key is, you can't repeat one that you've used before on following days. It's an interesting exercise. And it begins to turn your thinking around to where you are putting out positive thoughts into the world. It would help counteract the negative streak that I somtimes hear in your blogs and emails. Not that it's not ok to be down and discouraged, but there seems to be a very negative outlook that may be self-destructive.

Just a thought or two for what they're worth.

Take good care of yourself!
Very big hugs,
Suzanne

5:30 PM, August 18, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, I stopped hoping long ago. In my experience, if anything good comes, it usually comes unexpectedly. Hope usually always ends up in dissapointment.
We have to deal with what comes I guess. But one thing I do know, you have made a difference. You help and support people. You nearly killed yourself in that suicide prevention walk.
And everything your daughter has is because of you. Because of you, she has someone to be there for her, someone to watch out for her, and give her love and acceptance.

So if your life isnt going so well, just remember that you have the ability to give to others the things you didnt have.
Remember, you have a good heart, you care about others, and you do make a difference in peoples lives. Your a good person.

Take care,
Billy

1:30 AM, August 19, 2005  
Blogger Polar Bear said...

You know, I used to say that hope was a denial of reality. That it was nothing more than a denial of reality....

I know how it feels to have hope crushed over and over and over and over again. I know how it feels when everything you ever reach out for and want are things that you never get. And yet you continue to yearn for those things even more and more...

But I do agree with Nicole, Sid. I think if we don't have hope, then we won't be alive anymore. I think the very fact that you are alive, says that you still have that, no matter how fragile that hope is. The trick is to make that flicker, that little flash of hope, into somethning bigger... a flame....

It's a lot of hard work, Sid. But I think you can find it in you to make this journey.

Polar

4:20 AM, August 19, 2005  
Blogger mizeeyore said...

i agree with both Suzanne and Polarbear...you ARE a good person and just like you, i have tried over and over to find hope in this maze called life only to have it crushed or snatched away from me. but like they said, in spite of your illness, you are still here. you are a wonderful mom to your daughter and yes, i agree, though hope seems fragile even non-existent, sometimes we have to find the determination to keep going no matter what obstacles or setbacks or disasters come our way. i think that you are an amazing woman, and maybe you dont see it, but those of us who have read your blog from beginning to the current posts know that in spite of your devastating illness, you have inner determination to be a mother to your child, to give that child love and be there for her. many women with illnesses such as ours would have given up, but those of us who havent given up even though we may feel like it still press on.

i pray that the journey you are on will turn itself into a positive one. i know you're an agnostic, and dont worry i'm not gonna go Jesus on ya *smile*, but hon, you are blessed in many many ways. please believe that ok?

(((((((Sid))))))))

peace blessings and love

miz e

12:00 PM, August 19, 2005  
Blogger James said...

Yeah, hope is pretty hard to have with a mental illness. I am rather pessimistic about things. I just assume the worst so that I won't be as hurt when it usually falls apart. It is difficult to maintain hope or faith in anything.

((((HUGS))))

2:59 PM, August 22, 2005  

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