Thursday, March 28, 2013

On Surviving. Again.



I've talked about survival before. Clearly I have some sort of fixation with concept. I did name this blog City Girl Can Survive, after all.

It still fascinates me, though. How do people manage, time and time again, to survive something terrible?

I keep going back to grief. It is commonly said that everyone grieves differently--I believe this is true. But I also have to believe that once grief fades away, survival is what sets in. And surviving? That is something we all do differently as well.

Some of us pour our hearts out. Some make light of their hardship. Others pour their energy into their work. Some keep it all inside. Some become angry. And unfortunately, some self-destruct.

There's no right way to survive--just like there's no right way to grieve. But this is the fascinating part: no one ever teaches you how to survive. No one sits you down as a small child and explains that life won't always be fair.

No, no one does that. At least no one I've ever met. Our parents arm us with what they believe are the skills we need to survive life. But they cannot anticipate what lies ahead--and they will never truly know.

And really? Neither do you. You cannot prepare for everything; which pretty much means you cannot prepare for anything.

I remind myself of this over and over again. Because if anyone is bad at taking my advice, it's me.

I'm terrible at taking my advice because life, if you haven't noticed, is a very fluid thing. It expands and contracts and spins in all sorts of directions almost constantly. And the moment you think you have your act together, you don't.

Because no one does--even the ones who seem like they do. And that's just as frustrating as it is comforting.

Some days, knowing that something terrible is part of a greater plan pisses me off. Other times, it's incredibly comforting. Either way, it's never the same feeling.

What I know for sure is this: you shouldn't just try to survive, you should try to live. Every day. With meaning. Substance. And a hunger to survive everything thrown your way.

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