I’ve had some time to think about our situation. You know the one. We’re on that bus…..the struggle one with bad brakes, no shocks and a driver who seems to be slightly myopic. It’s a rough ride, kid, but the company is fabulous. I’ve decided we need to celebrate our situation. It may suck, but at least we’re in this together! We need to get some truly tacky matching t-shirts. (Feel free to comment what our t-shirt slogan should be!) And I just ordered us some frozen margaritas. We’ve earned it. It doesn’t even matter if you spill some. Have you seen the state of the floors?
So why should we celebrate our most unpleasant trip in recent memory? Well, it could be always worse.
For starters, we could be under the bus – not in it. Think about how many people we’ve seen get taken out by life. Things get hard, they get knocked down, and they just never get back up. We aren’t those people. We’re the “not shrinking back” kind. We’re the fight another day kind. We’re the “it may be tough, but we’re tougher” kind. We may be down, but we’re not out. We just need a good night’s sleep and…..where’s that margarita?
I’ve decided that there’s beauty in the struggle. If everything was easy, then we’d never be challenged. We’d never accomplish more than we thought possible. We’d never surprise ourselves with our grit, our wit and our just plain amazingness. We’re not the easy kind. We’re the kind that fights life for every sunset, every first kiss, every heartbreak, every wind in our hair moment. We’re tenacious and greedy (in the best possible sense of the word). So yeah, sometimes things are going to suck because we can’t always see the sunset. There will be the occasional storm. But that’s okay because there’s a chance for another one tomorrow, and you can bet your sweet bippy we’ll be there to see it.
I’m currently reading Jordan Peterson’s “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote for Chaos”, and I’m struck by one of the rules: What if we treated ourselves like a person we were trying to help?
I know some of you who are reading, and you help other people all the dang time…..or as one of you would say: “every damn day”….so why aren’t you worth helping? You’re on the struggle bus. You have anxiety. You have pain. You have heartache. You have depression. So what? That doesn’t exempt you from being deserving of help. What if – and this does seem a little crazy – but what if you treated yourself like somebody you really, really love?
In my case, I’d have to quit saying some of the stuff I’ve been saying to me.
“What’s wrong with you?”
“Why can’t you snap out of it?”
“I thought you were tougher than this.”
Not kind. Not helpful. Not loving.
What do you need to stop saying to you?
The truth is: we’re lovely. We’re fun and funny. We’re smart. We’re kind. We’re thoughtful. And if the other people around you don’t see that, ditch them. Jump on the bus with the rest of us. We get it. It’s possible to be both fabulous and a complete mess. I can be both dazzling and a disaster. I can be stressed and sensational. So can you, but you probably knew that already.
If we have to take a leg or two on the struggle bus, so be it. Let’s make the most of it. Let’s have a good cry followed by a good laugh and possibly another round. Now, how many t-shirts do I need to order?