A few months back I made a committment to go back to school again. I didn’t know then that my emotional state would be upended by widely publicized instances of assault and abuse that, in many ways, left me feeling re-traumatized. It’s been difficult.
My mind wanders easily and tears occassionally escape, but I’m trying to keep my shit together overall. Perhaps you are too.
As with most things in life, I’m taking it slow. One class at a time, one assignment at a time. Reminding myself daily (sometimes hourly) that every step matters.
When I start feeling overwhelmed and hopeless, I take a step back. Steps back matter just as much as steps forward. They allow me to breathe, to disconnect and recenter so that I can come back fresh. Most of the time that step back is what allows me to take the step forward I was after in the beginning — and that’s why steps back matter just as much.
The point is, when we struggle it’s because things matter. If we didn’t care, we wouldn’t struggle with it. So don’t be afraid to take a step back once in a while. To take time to breathe. To re-evaluate. To distance yourself from something – just long enough to let the fears, the anxieties, the raging war(s) inside your head to wane – then give it another try.
Maybe it takes three tries. Maybe it takes 10. Maybe it takes 20 years.
Every step matters and every step counts. Small steps. Big steps. Steps forward. Steps back.
As long as we are doing something, we’re making progress. Don’t ever give up.
Love & Light