Things come and things go. It is the nature of life. Everything you have and will ever have will eventually go away. As you think about this you have to wonder what it is that we are all working for then. If we are destined to lose everything then why get anything to begin in the first place.
I don’t have an answer to this question. It is one that I struggle with each day. Why try? Why try when you know in the end it will not make a difference, you will not make a difference? Why put forth the effort only to know that it will all be in vain? My mind asks me question after question but they all mean the same thing. I have tried and tried to be a good trooper and move forward but when you are swimming as fast as you can but the current is still pulling you farther and farther from your destination it really makes it difficult to keep swimming.
I look to both sides of me for all these people in my life that are supposed to be in this with me and for the most part I see them snugly in boats paddling up the river. They cannot understand the effort I have to put in because their effort is so much different than mine. They can see that I am struggling but they only can cheer me on but how do they know how difficult this is to keep going. They are in the boat staying dry and paddling easily along. The undercurrents that I am continually fighting don’t affect the boat.
You know they want to help but they don’t know how and you cannot make them understand what you are going through? Some would say just to speak up and call for help. What they don’t understand is that every time you open your mouth it fills with water and you cannot say a thing. You try but nothing will come out because the water forces itself down your throat. This frustration only seems to make it harder to stay afloat so it pulls you down farther. All the while the river keeps getting faster and wilder. What were gentle waves have now turned into giant rapids and you spend all your effort just trying to keep your head above water. Just when you think you have gained some ground and you are getting control you find out that it was just the calm before the next set of rapids. Each set seems to get worse than the rest. Each time you go under it is harder and harder to fight your way back to the surface. The undercurrents are stronger and their pull is swifter. As you look for those who said they will help, they are floating farther and farther away. They have found the gentle route through the river and only look on shaking their heads wondering why I don’t just swim out of the river.
I know there is only one way out of this river, out of these rapids and that is just to let the water take me away. It is to just stop fighting and let my head slowly slip beneath the surface. I would see those few who stay to watch through the watery window. Their blurry images would slowly fade away. I would feel myself gently glide down deeper and deeper into the awaiting abyss. The darkness of the deep river would quickly envelop me so that I could no longer see anything. I could no longer hear anything. The only sense I would have left would be the feel of the cold water chilling my skin, but it would feel like a cool gentle caress, like a baby blanket wrapping completely around me. It would feel so nice I let everything go and just settle into it and let everything go. The cool enveloping blanket would push out all the pain, all the suffering, all the regrets, all the guilt, all the shame. It would block out the voices that never stop, the failures, the reminders of the life that once was. The only thing left would be me. It would strip everything else away. Only through this would I ever see who I really am. It could be the only chance to take everything else away and truly know myself.
So knowing all this why do I keep swimming? Why do I keep fighting? Some would say that I need to do it for others. I need to keep fighting for my kids, but why? They are in the boat right along the others. They can see the fight I am putting up but as I said before, nothing last forever and this includes my relationship with them. It will end just as all relationships end. I feel like at one point I may have been in the boat with them. I was there paddling along with my wife navigating the rapids of the river but then I jumped, fell, was pushed overboard. My wife and kids stayed in the boat where they belong. My suffering helps keep them safe in the boat. It lets them be able to paddle in their own direction. They can choose which ever path they want because I am no longer steering the boat. And while they may choose to stay along side of me, watching me swim and fight to stay up, eventually they will have to go their own way. Eventually they will leave just like everything else in this world, like everything else in my life. They will slowly fade away as the darkness envelopes me.
10 thoughts on “The River of Life”
I am a betrayed wife, and can PROMISE YOU that your family deeply desires you to get back in the boat. While reality may be an illusion…perhaps it is better described as understood through different perspectives…being in the PRESENT is not. I get the sense you are living in the past, allowing it to speak into your current life and determine what your future life will be. STOP. STOP NOW. Stand in the moment, and hold hands with those who have declared they want you to be part of their lives. Consider the possibilities?
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You don’t know how many times I have been given that advice. For me it is so overwhelming that I cannot get past it. It seems like everyone want to forgive me but myself. I do work hard to not let it show in my life and to be present but it is draining.
You are not alone. The struggle is real, I live it daily. I know that the relationships I damaged so badly and are now the driving force of my identity and purpose. I harmed them yet I have a role in their healing and those actions heal me. I encourage you to press into those relationships and find a reality you can grasp. A reality that will not fade.
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Thanks. It is a difficult balance that is not easily achieved. Most of the time I focus on them because I don’t know what to do with myself.
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‘rage, rage against the dying light’
Why do we work hard, why do we strive to conquer, To obtain things which in the end once we are gone will remain left behind in the wake of our blowing ashes?
Why not strive to have a semblance of a comfortable and happy life while we are still living? It’s not about what we will leave at the end but how we enjoyed our life, and how we lived to the best of our ability while we still had air in our lungs. While we still are breathing.
We are all in a battlefield of our own. We are all struggling with something and it is up to us how we trudge through the war zone.
It is up to us how we fight, if we give up or not.
I know being brave becomes tiresome, but we must not give up; after all there is always light at the end of The tunnel.
Keep swimming even when you feel like giving way to the Waves and the silence in the dark. Keep your head above water… you are worth it.
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You could have written this for me. I feel like this every single day, especially the part about “children.” Mine, too are in another boat…the same boat that holds Loser and his WTC. This is horrible and I am so sorry that you feel so blue. I wish we could stand side by side….two broken people. Maybe collectively, we could find one shred of strength to carry on.
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Trust me when I say that I could have written this post myself, and it’s exactly how I’m feeling right now. I have just two people in the boat, watching. One person is fully aware of what is going on because he is having issues with that himself. The other is too young to understand but my sheer determination for her to have the best life possible is what keeps me fighting.
My problem is this time of year. Too unrealistic and I have no patience for the blatant phoniness I experience among my “family.”
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I completely agree. I just go from moment to moment and try and avoid the phoniness as much as possible. I am lucky we have no family within a few thousand miles so we don’t get much of it anymore. But the people we did have in our lives around here were the same.
Just keep looking ahead. Whether we want it or not the holidays will end and no matter what we do we cannot speed up the process. So know each minute you endure is one minute closer to the end of the holiday season.
Here is a post I wrote a while ago that is of the similar nature just more centered on my internal struggle. You might connect with it. Or more likely think I am nuts. https://affairwithcoffee.wordpress.com/2015/10/24/where-are-we-really-going-does-anyone-really-know-how-to-drive-this-bus/