By Nancy Virden (c)2021
The past few weeks have been a trial for me. A chronic illness left me fatigued for months and as you may have read on this blog, was finally treated. Home a few days from the hospital, similar symptoms appeared again. This time I was angry.
Hope is not the emotion or thought process I was experiencing. However, the lesson I wrote about was somewhat learned; I did not wait – as long – to ask for help. Yep, landed back in the hospital. I have the Delta Variant of Covid 19 and am now isolating at home.
This hospital stay was unlike others. I was cold, food did not come readily (I went an entire day without eating because the nurses were so busy). My case was mild and so little attention was afforded my direction. This is what an understaffed hospital looks like in the middle of a pandemic. Self-pity wanted to cling to me but I shook it off remembering my mom’s words as she was wheeled into breast cancer surgery, “This too shall pass.” And it did.
Who can achieve and sustain a mindset of hope?
Hope begins to appear when we decide to believe for it. Hope can be deferred or chosen.
We can delay it out of fear that allowing hope will increase our disappointment later. For instance, after applying for a job years ago, I went through a typical process of worry, anxiety, trying not to think about it, and trying not to raise my expectations. It was unsettling and hurt. Nothing else took precedent over my mind while waiting. Will they call? Maybe they will say yes? Oh, I’d better not think that. I’ll crash if I allow that thought and they say no. So I deferred hope – or tried to.
Does that ever actually work? The effort it takes to squelch hope often requires far more energy and steals more enjoyment out of each day than the final disappointment if it even comes to that. Our reasoning, if I don’t hope I won’t hurt, fails. Shoving down hope or trying to avoid high hopes – that’s painful.
A few weeks later, the phone rang. The job was mine. What a difference hope would have made those weeks! There is peace, calm, and rest in hope. If I’d been turned down it would have been hard. Disappointment is not worse or better because of what we do with hope. The loss is the loss, it will hurt anyway. By hoping, we have shortened the hours, days, months, and years of the pain that deferring it causes. -COMMENTS WELCOME
Today’s Helpful Word
Proverbs 13: 12
Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.
If you are feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. or go to your nearest emergency room. In the EU call 112. (For other international emergency numbers, go here ). Hope and help are yours!
Always the Fight Ministries (ATFM) has been displaying compassion for those fighting mental illness, addiction, or abuse since 2012. Nancy is the founder and voice of ATFM and openly shares her emotional resurrection from despair. NOTE: Nancy is not a doctor or a mental health professional, and speaks only from personal experience and observations. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
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