A Glimmer of Hope

That’s all you need. Just a glimmer. A hint of a glimmer, even. That’s all. It doesn’t take much. All you’re looking for is one tiny hint of a glimmer…

To survive.

Life isn’t easy. Heh. What a fucking understatement. Life is a pain in the ass, that’s what. Especially when you’re an emotional brooder. I am one seriously angsty, existentially pained person. And I’m not the only one. You ponder the same things, don’t you?

Why am I here?
What’s the fucking point?
What is my purpose?
Why fucking bother?
Who am I?
What does it all mean?
What is my place?
Do I have one?
Am I even real?
What does it even mean to be real?

I don’t have answers to any of those questions. Sometimes I wish I could stop seeking them. But I also don’t wish to cease the quest. Because questing is part of the answer of “Who am I?” I’m a woman on a quest. A tiny speck in the Cosmos on my own personal quest for meaning and purpose. And when it isn’t breaking me down and crushing my lungs, it’s thrilling, exciting. The search, the quest…when I stop asking questions; when I stop searching for meaning and purpose and truth and beauty; then I cease to exist.

I just wish…that I could stop turning suicidal when I cannot find satisfactory answers to the questions that haunt me. Drive me. Push me. Tear at me. Claw at me.

I feel incomplete. And since I know not how to become complete, I devolve into a mass of emotional futility. I begin feeling that I wish I could simply cease to exist. For if there is no purpose for me, for my existence, then it should be extinguished.

But I know. I know that is the depression talking. The downswing of bipolar. What-the-fuck-ever it is. I know that’s what’s doing the talking in those dark hours of my soul.

And that’s what’s talking to you. When you feel like you can’t go another step. Take another breath. Eke out another heartbeat. That’s what’s talking: your depression.

Maybe the people in your life who were supposed to build you up and love you failed in their responsibilities to you. Maybe they taught you that you’re worthless. Useless. A no-account failure.

Maybe you made mistakes in your past, and you’ve never forgiven yourself for them. Even as everyone else around you has forgotten or moved on. Or perhaps their punishments far outweigh your crimes.

Maybe you’re all alone. Or you think you are. But guess what? If you’re here, reading this right now, you aren’t alone. Not entirely.

Listen, I’m no therapist. I certainly don’t have the answers. I’m a mess my damn self. Anyone who’s been around here a while knows that to be true. I’m a work in progress, and I always will be.

But there’s something I do know for sure: if you don’t grasp those tiny glimmers of hope, then you’re in big trouble. No one can grasp them for you. You have to reach out and grasp them on your own.

But we can show you. We can show each other. We can point each other toward the glimmers. Toward the “light.” Toward survival. Toward life.

I don’t have much. Disregarding all the first-world bullshit, I don’t have much in the way of what I think makes a complete life. But you know what? I have to recognize that part of that is my misconception of what makes a complete life. There is no one right way to live your life.

I feel alone. Completely and utterly alone. And you know what? That’s fucked up. Because I have you awesome people here. All I have to do is show the fuck up, and people come and say hi and talk to me and to each other. That’s it. No one can force me to be here. I have to do that part myself. But people point me toward this glimmer. One amazing friend in particular hassles me to show up and write. Hassle hassle hassle. And you know something? When I do, I feel better. Every. Fucking. Time. And I feel less alone.

I still go to bed alone. I still don’t get hugs and affection. I still don’t have someone to sit beside me and play video games with, or read and dissect the same literature with, or tickle each other until we nearly piss our pants.

But I’m not completely alone. And to say so would be a slap in the face to you wonderful people here. This is something I have to remind myself of daily.

I feel worthless. Pointless. Useless. I really do. It hurts, and I’m crying even typing this all out. But then I get reminded sometimes that I do have worth, even if I don’t think I do or I don’t think it’s enough. Because sometimes someone shows up here and says my words touched them. Or they understand how I feel and are glad to know they aren’t alone. And I know that feeling well. I’ve visited some of you and read your words, and I think to myself…I wish this person wasn’t going through that but fucking hell it makes me feel such a sense of relief to know I’m not alone in this. It’s not just me. I’m not some fucked up anomaly.

Maybe you feel trapped and hopeless, like you’re stuck in your current situation with no way out. Or you don’t even know what you want or how to get there. I’ve been there. I know that feeling, too.

I feel like this is all very rambly, but I’m pretty much freewriting right now. Because I had a conversation today, with one of the most important people in the world to me. And he said he was tired. Tired of life. Tired of it all. Just. Fucking. Tired. And didn’t feel there was any reason to go on anymore. And I said, you have to dig deep and discover what those things are that make you want to keep trudging forward. He said he doesn’t want to trudge. I wish I could do it for him. I wish I could do it for all of you. But all I can do is share my experiences and try to give you a glimmer of hope. And I hope with all my soul that you reach for it.

Each and every day, I tell myself: find one thing. Just one thing. And let that one thing be your one reason to get out of bed today. To keep on keeping on. Everyone can find one thing. Just. One. Thing. I got that from this beautiful post that I used to read every single day. Now I read it once or twice a month or as needed to remind myself. Please. Please read it. It’s important for those of you who struggle with me. Or if you know someone who does, maybe this will help them as it helped me. Hell it saved me. I found it because I was googling suicide. I think I googled something like, “give me one good fucking reason I shouldn’t kill myself right now.” And that showed up. And I’m still here.

Let me tell you the sorts of things I cling to, some “big” and some “small.” I put those in quotes, because anything that keeps you going is a Big Fucking Deal.

The things I “trudge on” for:

  • You. Yes, you. The one reading this right now. The community here on WordPress.
  • My friends. I actually have friends now, thanks to this space. And you mean the world to me.
  • The smell of freshly cut grass. Oh I love that smell.
  • All sorts of smells: rain, ocean, sweat, flowers, pot, clean skin, mountain air, pine…
  • The feel of rain on my face.
  • Mountain breezes and cold glacial air.
  • The crunch of autumn leaves underfoot.
  • Thick, dank forest air and the clean sweat from humidity.
  • Laughter, pure and uninhibited.
  • A purring feline nestled against me.
  • Books and words and thoughts and challenged perspectives.
  • Popsicles on 105 degree August days.
  • The new Deftones album I’ve yet to listen to.
  • I want to thru-hike the PCT.
  • I want to jump out of an airplane.
  • I want to sit on the steps of Montmatre.
  • I want to walk the cobblestone streets of Prague.
  • I want to kayak Class IV and V rapids.
  • I want to fix up an old sailboat myself, learn to sail and take that bitch for an epic excursion.

There are so many reasons, y’all. And all you need is one. One reason. One little reason for each day. Maybe it’s the same reason over and over. Maybe it’s something small. Maybe it’s something grand. But all you need is one. And I know good and damn well everyone has at least one.

Find it. Ask yourself what you live for. What your simple and grand joys and visions are. Find them. And then reach out. Reach out for those glimmers of hope. And once you’ve found them and reached for them, pursue them. I will never kayak Class V rapids, until I learn how to control my kayak in Class II and III rapids and overcome my fear of great depths in water. I will never accomplish that sitting on my ass or crying in bed all weekend.

Life is a bitch sometimes. It’s just a point of fact. It would be so easy to pull a trigger and end it all. So. Fucking. Easy. But you’re still here reading, because you’re looking for a reason not to.

Know this: the only thing that 100 percent CANNOT be changed or undone is death. Everything is in your power to change or improve upon. Except your death. You cannot change that. You cannot undo it. You cannot try again. You cannot start over. And you will never get that first kiss. You will never climb that mountain. You will never see that open air opera in Rome. You will never land your dream job. You will never learn how to bake that cake. You will never have that cottage near the forest. If you pull the trigger.

Depression is strong and deceptive. You have to fight it. Fight for your life. The glimmers of hope aren’t going to track you down and save you. You have to extend your hand. Reach for them. Then tomorrow, you can get up and take one step forward. And another step the day after.

And before you know it, you’re no longer surviving.

You’re living.

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56 thoughts on “A Glimmer of Hope

  1. This was such a profound post and it spoke to me, not that I’ve ever been that close to suicide but there was something about this post and the article you suggested that speaks to me and I can’t quite put my finger on what that is.

    It’s like when you go to therapy and one of the questions they ask you is why you’re there? My answer was usually “I don’t know but I know that something isn’t right”.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love how you ended, it gives me hope. Before you know it, you’re no longer surviving. You’re living. Right now I feel like I am only surviving, it is good to hear that it will turn into living, for me, again. Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This, sweet Steph, is profound and true. You have us and we have you. And if at the end of the day, after all the bullshit settles, that’s all we have? Well, lil’ sis – we be some damned lucky people.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Thanks for sharing this Stephanie, I am so glad that you’ve found so many things worth living for! Your message is profound in that you just need one thing to keep going for. I hope that your list continues to grow and that you never have to think very long to find one thing to keep going for! *hugs*

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You have no idea how much I simultaneously admire and envy you. Even with all the shit you’ve been through, you’re still one funny fucker man. Your blog was one of the first blogs I started following, for some stupid amazing reason you started following me too, when I was only 5 followers in. I love your writing, sometimes it bugs me how much more witty and just better at writing you are then me. And then the serious stuff is raw, and in these cases completely relatable and as someone who has been outcasted their entire life, who has pretty well spent their whole existence feeling nothing but emptiness, as you said in this post, it’s relieving to know you’re not alone. If I had money I’d be like, come to Aus I totally have money to feed you if you come over.

    Hang in there, remember that the feeling never lasts forever, the sun will come out tomorrow.. (Sorry, was thinking about 2 different musical theatre songs to reference, and settled on the ranga child coz everyone knows that song)

    ‘Place your hand over your heart, feel that, it’s called purpose.
    You are alive for a reason, don’t give up.’

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah Kim, this means so much to me. More than you know. Thank you – so fucking much.

      I followed you because I love your writing! I’m just SHIT at keeping up with blogs, especially lately when it seems I can’t remember the sentence I read three seconds ago.

      Maybe one of these days I’ll have money, and I can fly over for a visit! I have so many people to visit in Australia, and you’re one of them!!

      Thank you…for the musical lines. Things like that always make me smile. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Thanks for sharing this. Been going through a lot of darkness lately so this was a great read as a reminder. I tried as an experiment now to see what would be my ” list ” of things that would keep me going, if I would fall into even deeper darkness. Amazingly I could instantly think of like 5-10 things and I bet I could find more if I really sat down and gave it more of a thought.

    So glad that you also have found many things to give you hope.
    Take care and be well.
    πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s fantastic! And I bet you’re right – I bet you could find more. Hell, one of the simple things on my list is that I need to catch up on Game of Thrones. Sometimes it’s the simplest of things.

      Thank you..and I’m so glad you liked the list thing. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  7. you have express your feelings
    So beautifully
    You wrapped it up tight with a bow
    that glimmer of hope
    Great post Steph
    I couldn’t of said it any……….
    Big hugs and kisses
    The Sheldon Perspective

    Liked by 1 person

  8. No I am very proud of you
    For stepping out of your comfort zone
    And saying
    And giving
    An expressing your experience,strength,and hope
    It’s so important to let others know that the glimmer is out there
    And that’s exactly what you did
    You are now a seeker
    The Sheldon Perspective

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That means so much to me, Sheldon. Truly.

      So many people here, yourself included, have helped me by providing their perspectives and their struggles with the darkness. I think we all owe it to each other to do so when we have the strength. So that when we lack, we can look to each other.

      This community is invaluable.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Damn, so very jealous now….i had some crappy cream of broccoli soup for lunch with a seafood sub with Swiss cheese….not the same as yummy nuts…..not going out again, the tropical storm is dumping more rain….you know I melt in the rain, right?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Whoa, be safe down there! I’m having chicken noodle soup and goldfish crackers. πŸ˜€

        One of my mamaws used to tell me I was so sweet, I’d melt in the rain. Everyone else always said, “don’t worry – it’s not like YOU’RE gonna melt.” πŸ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

  9. “But there’s something I do know for sure: if you don’t grasp those tiny glimmers of hope, then you’re in big trouble. No one can grasp them for you. You have to reach out and grasp them on your own”
    This is so true.
    I have found that NO ONE could mend me.
    Maybe yes they can complete me so I am not an isolated shut off cold no feeling zombie BUT that isn’t mending me.
    I have mended me just as you are doing.
    I have come a great deal of distance over the past few years and I am now starting to feel the benefits.
    It WILL happen to you and to anyone else who is mindful of this fact.
    It doesn’t happen over night but it does happen and we are living proof of this so you keep on keeping on Steph.
    Be like the Redskins, swing out, believe what you believe but most of all – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SibgDQWU85g

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wise words from you, as always my friend. It’s so easy to look to others to mend us, but all we can do is help guide the way for each other. The mending is up to us, ourselves. Perhaps we can provide each other with needle and thread, but they’re useless without motivation to use them.

      I’m hoping…upon hope…that I’m learning how to sew.

      And thank you for the song, too – you know I love to punctuate or underscore things with music!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. All the good questions humans ask.

    Speaking personally, simple pleasures, great joys, a lot of your list make the journey worthwhile. Depression is brief for me, moments of despair and agony, such a loneliness…Anyone who lives with that daily, with actual clinical depression, is far stronger than I.
    Hope and gratitude are my trusted companions.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like that – what you said about hope and gratitude.

      I struggle to hold on to hope, a great deal in fact. But yes, I’m trying to train myself to see that it’s all worthwhile if I just keep pushing myself to pursue those simple pleasures instead of wallowing. Some days are easier than others.

      And I dunno about stronger…we all have different battles. I just hope I keep mustering up the strength for each and every day. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Your strength is admirable. Gratitude helps me with panic. Sometimes it’s the only thing that helps.
        Some days wallowing is much, much easier. Complaining (writing) helps too πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  11. We live on, I suspect, in the hope of something better. This post was pretty good, so that’s a promising start. To imagine things getting better is a leap forward. And to recognise them when they come is the icing on the cake. Sorry if that’s a bit Panglossian, but that’s the kind of cheerful idiot I am. Hell of a good post, though!

    Liked by 1 person

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