American Poet and Novelist Charles Bukowski once said, “What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.”
I have sucked. Hard.
Since an accident one month ago in which I broke my right collarbone and left wrist, I have been the world’s worst fire-walker-througher.
I actually think I would’ve done a much better job literally walking through fire, as opposed to this long drawn out suck fest. Charles Bukowski sort of sounds like a jerk.
I have been totally insufferable. Frustrated. Aggravated. Irritated. Sad. Angry.
I’ve done more apologizing in the past 30 days than maybe the past 30 years.
Sorry for being such a bitch.
Sorry I’m so grouchy.
Sorry I said that.
Sorry my life has taken over yours.
Sorry. I know I’m impossible.
These don’t include the other obvious list of Sorrys. As in, the ‘Sorry you have to bathe/dress/wipe/feed/situate/drive/shop for/do every last thing for me’ variety.
I’m sorry to say pain brought out the worst in me.
And the crying. Sweet Jesus on a bicycle. The crying. Crying about pain. About the loss of autonomy. About my hair and everyone’s complete inability to do it even remotely close to the way I do it. (See? See how ugly I’m acting??) Crying about MY inability to do ANYTHING.
I wish I could say something inspirational. I wish I could tell you about all the valuable ways I’ve redeemed these helpless hours.
I got nothin’.
Actually, that’s not entirely true.
I got through it.
I’m getting through it.
Scandal, Season 4. Facebook. Instagram. Pinterest. Twitter. Online shopping. Staring into space trying to remember how awesome my life was pre-accident. Practicing my fake smile and drug-induced nod when people remind me of all the possible silver linings. Staring at my mom and shaking my head in disbelief as I ask for the millionth time, ‘Can you freaking believe this? No, really. Can you believe this actually happened?’ (She can’t, by the way. She really can’t.)
The good news is, I’m starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel. I’m holding my own coffee cup and managing a little mascara and getting pretty darn adaptive– with my right side, anyway. Sounds super impressive, right?
But a few days ago, after giving up on Charles Bukowski, I stumbled upon a blog called Real Life.Truthfully. This girl. Bless her heart. She’s just trying to make her way– she’s had a lot of high highs and low lows. She knows how to do hard things and weather hard times. And as I read her work, I felt inspired. She recently wrote about how sometimes the difficulties of life require time and space to see that maybe everything’s going to be okay after all. And I could feel that. She wrote about totally effing up her life so many different times, in so many different ways– but that she keeps just trying to be brave and show up,even when she’s not sure how the whole thing is going to turn out. She talks about God. And grace. And kindness. About being surrounded by so much love and goodness in her life and how its carried her through.
And there’s this theme. This beautiful, multi-colored thread running through all of her work. About trying to press on. Not giving up. Even when it’s messy and hard and it seems like everything is just…wrong. About going one step farther even when you are positive you just can’t.
And somehow, after reading through it all, I felt encouraged. And inspired. And strengthened. I may not be very good at walking through this fire, but I think I’m going to make it after all.
[ Hey Jessica! Thanks for the pep talk! See it here. ]