It’s a small crack in a big stone
Waiting, watching, growing
Ready to burst open
To show its depth, its vastness
Cracking, busting, smashing
Breaking rock to create sand
Sand that bare feet can run on
Sand that laughs lightly as it crawls between your toes
Sand that smells of sunshine and new beginnings
Sand that gets into crevices we didn’t even know we had
Sand that remains, remnants ready
Ready to start again
Ready to rebuild
Ready to breed goals
Expand dreams and forge out a new existence
Hope, holding out a hand to pull you up
Hope is a funny thing: you can have as much of it as you want. It is free. It is simple, and it is always available. It is so powerful, yet so many people chose to ignore its existence. They choose to focus on what has gone wrong in their lives, poor choices they have made, or unfortunate setbacks. As a testament to National Recovery Month, I am here to tell you that hope is a choice; it’s a mindset available to all of us, and it is there waiting for you like an old friend.
Hope can change the world. Or at least, it can change your world. Hope is what gets people through the most gruesome of experiences and what keeps them going when the going gets tough, as they say.
Hope is something I have struggled with over the years. As I have recovered from trauma, emotional abuse, addiction, and depression, there have been many times in my life when I could not summon the belief that I could get through an experience or that things would ever be good again. I felt hopeless. The irony of the situation was that things couldn’t, or wouldn’t, get better until I believed they could—until I restored my hope.
How do we do that? How does one restore hope in his or her soul? Its simple, really. All you have to do is share. Open up and share honestly about where you are and how you are feeling. It is not always easy, but it is simple. Whether you talk with a friend, a support group, a stranger, or you seek out professional advice, take the rock you have built around whatever it is you may be recovering from right now and break open a crack. Let that crack be the start of your sand.
I think we all wish at times that life would just be easy and that things could happen for us when and how we want them to. We look around at other people, and often their lives seem to be going great—no struggles. I have found that this is almost always never true. Every single time I have made the effort to really get to know someone, I am always amazed at what they are currently going through or have had to go through to get to where they are today. Everyone’s struggles are unique, and who am I to judge what is more challenging or life-changing? It is different for everyone. The fact of the matter is that we have all had to go through struggles, tough experiences, and pain in order to grow. This is a lifelong process, and it doesn’t stop until we do. The key to making it through is having, keeping, and restoring hope.
This is the cycle of life. We wouldn’t know joy if we never experienced sadness. We wouldn’t be grateful if we never experienced loss. We can’t truly learn empathy and understanding until we experience our own pain and walk through our own fears. The beauty of this is that we all have hope to share. Whatever battle you are facing right now, I promise, there is someone out there who has gone before you. Seek these brave souls out, and let them tell you their stories. Hope is contagious, and you can catch it as much as you can give it. But give it. Share your story. Give it as freely as you you take it from others. We all have an unlimited supply.