Resilience. The ability to bounce back from adversity.
I remember learning about it in Year 9 PDH, back in a time when I wasn’t so resilient. High School was a mixed bag for me. I had a lot of good times, but a lot of bad times too. Not because a lot of bad things happened to me, but because I let bad things get to me to the point of depression, especially in my junior years.
After High School I went to University, which I absolutely hated. I had no friends, no time, and I couldn’t handle the workload. It came to the point where I had a mental and emotional breakdown every week. I realized it was pointless for me to continue, not just because of the high stress it caused, but because the only reason I went was to fulfill other people’s expectations. It wasn’t what I wanted to do.
Fast forward a few years and here I am. I’d say that in those few years I learned how to become quite resilient to life’s problems. I learned that there was no point in staying down after something unfortunate had happened, or to wish that my life was any better than it was without doing anything about it. I learned that in order to appreciate good things, bad things were necessary. Of course I wasn’t immune to becoming upset, but eventually I wouldn’t let things upset me for more than a few hours after they were over. I’d be down for a little while, then look at problems as a learning experience and a chance to mature. I was always hopeful that things would get better.
People say that life is like a roller coaster because it has it’s ups and downs. I’d prefer to use the analogy of a set of scales. When something good happens it gets added onto one plate, and when something bad happens it gets added to the other. Good and bad things happen all the time, so it feels as though things are consistently being added and taken away on both sides that they remain in close balance to one another. Sometimes, one scale will outbalance the other and I’ll have a great week or a not so great week, and that’ll be life.
But this week it’s felt like one side has heavily outweighed the other. Within a few days it’s felt as though my world has come crashing down. A build up of so many bad things at once has left me feeling overwhelmed, vulnerable and broken. I know I’ll be able to recover, but those few hours have turned into a few days, which I’m afraid will turn into a few weeks – something I don’t have.
I was never prepared for so much stress at once. I never thought I’d be so fragile that whenever someone approached me to ask if I was okay all I could do was burst into tears. I never thought that being down would cause me to avoid my responsibilities or to avoid hanging out with my friends. I never thought I’d feel so incompetent. Like so much of a burden.
I want to have a better attitude about this! I want to be able to say, “Hey, it’s okay these things are happening to me because once they’re over I’ll be a stronger person”. Deep down I know that I’ll eventually be okay, but maybe I have to come to terms with the fact that sometimes I can’t change things and just have to accept them the way they are – even if those things break my heart. Maybe after some time I’ll be totally fine – better than fine! After some time, I’ll figure out how to tackle each of these problems and the scales will tip back into balance. After some time, life will keep going on and I’ll keep moving forward.
After some time, I’ll be okay. But right now, all I can do is sleep, eat and cry.