Eleanore Vs. Oddities of Optimism

Dear astounding, anthropomorphous archetypes,

I just love alliteration. It’s far too early and I can’t slepe. Sloop? Sheep? You know, that thing you’re supposed to be doing at 5:17 am. I can’t do it. My lack of sleep is a concoction of going to bed earlier than normal because I was in terrible pain, still being in terrible pain, and my thoughts swirling about my skull like dandelion fluff. So here I find myself, typing this out on my phone with care in hopes that I do not drop my phone on my face…again.

As you know or possibly don’t, I try to be a realist. I believe that being too far down the road of pessimism or optimism can both be dangerous in their own right. Especially when living with chronic illness, being hopeful yet realistic seems to be the best method to navigate through my version of human life. However, in times of great distress, which is what I am currently experiencing, leaning slightly more towards optimism isn’t a totally terrible idea. This current period of my life is the second time all my plans for existence, large and small, have fallen to pieces, crumpled and tossed out by the hands of the universe with a resounding, “nope!”. That isn’t a particularly fabulous feeling. When every part of my life is in turmoil, it’s difficult to feel hopeful or excited. However, since I’ve been through this whole life falling apart thing once before, I’m a bit more experienced than last time. I’d like to share with your eyeballs a short collection of the bright sides of having life go South, so to speak. I generally dislike list type posts, but this time I think it’s needed. Fire the bullet (points)!

  • Okay, so 90% of everything went to hell. The good news is, now that I no longer have a foreseeable future in the works, in an odd way, I’m actually set free. I have less obligations to keep me from new adventures and I can welcome just about anything into my life. While it’s surely terrifying to have so much unknown in my life, it’s also exhilarating to have such freedom. Dare I say it, it really is a new beginning. (I apologize for the cliche. Were I a better writer I’d have a more articulate way to put this, but it’s also 5 in the morning, so give me a bit of a break!)
  • All of my worst fears have come true. On the one hand, this is a major bummer. What I envisioned to be the worst possible outcome of my life is now the life I am living. On the other tentacle, the fact that so much already happened means that I no longer have to fear as much as I did before, and spoiler alert, I’ve gotten through all of it. Which brings us to the final and most pertinent point:
  • I have survived every single day I swore I could not possibly get through. Every hospital visit, every day filled with excruciating pain and havoc inducing heartbreak I have survived; and I deserve to be proud of myself for that. Wait…did she say tentacle? Oh yes, she most certainly did.

All of this doesn’t cure the pain keeping me from sleep or solve any of my problems, but these odd little pieces of optimism make it all seemingly more manageable. When I’m overwhelmed, sick and helpless, I don’t need immediate advice or a military grade attack plan. I just need to know that I will survive and that I have the capacity to do so. If my past proves anything at all, it’s that I am strong as hell and am a warrior of illness, of emotional and physical suffering, and am seriously badass. I do believe that just because someone is resilient, it doesn’t mean they should suffer. Yet since much of my current predicament is out of my control, that opinion has no relevance.

I don’t know what is going to happen, and I despise not knowing. But whatever it is, I hope with all my heart it’s something remarkable, because I intend to pour my heart into my life just as I always have. If you’re a human like me, feeling as if you have lost your way, I am hoping for you, too. We’re all just buckets of stardust playing this weird game called life. At least the graphics are decent.

You can’t maximize a life. What you can do, is try to be honest in the choices that you make. Be true to yourself, no matter how embarrassing those choices are. Life is not a science. I realize that. Look, I’m a guy who does palindromes and tells jokes about leather jackets because that gives me some meaning, at least for now. And you know what, I apologize for none of it. Because the unexamined life is not worth living, man.

~Demetri Martin -If I

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