It's inevitable that any adult will tell you, life can bring unexpected problems that just....knock the wind out of you.

I'm facing a moment like that.

It's when you suddenly realize that everything you thought would protect you - won't. When you find out that your plans didn't work. When one moment you were on top of the mountain, and now you're at the bottom of an avalanche.

So I'm taking my 5 minutes of self pity...and then I have no choice but to get up and do something about it.

Fear is the most paralyzing of all emotions. I am a creature that freezes up in fear, and every movement hurts to try to overcome it.

There is this concept of a "Survivor" meaning that you've somehow overcome adversity. Anyone who has been through anything (which is all of us) could say potentially that we're survivors...but when does it stop? When can we be at peace? When does the harshness of life stop being harsh? When can we rest? Truly rest. When will we feel safe?

How do you find tranquility when you are stuck at the bottom of Maslow's pyramid? How do you overcome the stress of not being safe? How many times can a person lose everything and still stay sane? How do you escape the cycle - for good? How do you make good decisions when you are scared?

When does it end? How many times can you break a person before they can no longer be put back together? Why when you've done everything you can do is it never enough to really....thrive?

How many broken hearts and smashed dreams can a person endure in a lifetime?

Views: 150

Comment by Simon Paynton on May 2, 2015 at 6:15am

Keep on trying.  That's all you can do. 

Comment by Strega on May 2, 2015 at 9:19am
Its hard to make constructive suggestions because without the actual problem to consider, there's no application of logic to be had.

I read recently that panic attacks and other fear experiences can often (not always) be eased a little by eating something. Apparently eating tricks the mind into thinking it must be safe or you wouldn't be eating, you'd be fleeing or fighting. So just before you make a decision, have a snack.

The other thing to realize when you have your 'dreams shattered'is that nothing has actually changed, other than there is new information in your head. The state of play outside you has now been reassessed, giving rise to these unwanted emotions. But nothing actually changed other than your perception of the world you inhabit.

Tell yourself you'll survive. Despair and ecstasy aren't emotions you can express for very long.
Comment by Belle Rose on May 2, 2015 at 12:05pm
Thank you for those words Strega,

I might have to drop out of school....we're facing homelessness. If it were just me I wouldn't care....but I have a son to think about. Everything changed just like "that" and the plan I had to sustain us didn't work out...now I have to come up with a new plan, FAST. We're almost out of food and the food bank isn't open today...I don't get food stamps til tomorrow...we will just "barely" make it...Im trying to be logical about it, but I'm sad...all I've worked for may not be possible to finish.
Comment by Strega on May 2, 2015 at 1:05pm
Logic tells you to use the food bank tomorrow and save your food stamps until you need them. Your son won't understand the issues, but he will understand there's something wrong by your distress.

If you have to drop out of school, don't just disappear, explain to the school what's going on. They may even have ideas on how you can manage part of your current crisis.

Freeze leftovers. I'm always amazed at how much food is trashed here in the States. Make soups. Ask your local butcher if he has any ham or beef bones left after he's cut the meats.
Comment by Pope Beanie on May 3, 2015 at 4:17pm

I don't know how much you liked or disliked law enforcement, but I wonder if right now isn't a perfect time to consider employment due to new law enforcement needs, especially wrt local policies on minorities, including protections and other programs.

Comment by Pope Beanie on May 3, 2015 at 4:23pm

I don't want to go all fantasy on you, but I've seen over the past year or so how you have to potential to take big steps, e.g. maybe even running for office. I suspect you might hate politics, and that might not be your things, but I feel you have the potential to raise your public profile in more ways than one.

Comment by Belle Rose on May 3, 2015 at 4:24pm
@Pope....hmmmmm....you got me thinking....
Comment by Dr. Bob on May 7, 2015 at 5:56pm

As a school person, I will echo @Strega's comment. 

We universities are evaluated on (and evaluate ourselves on) whether people finish degrees.  There are a lot of incentives to try to help students finish, on top of the fact that most of us as professors or administrators really do care about our students and will do what we can to help.   Every college and university I know has some mechanism for emergency financial support for a student.

Go talk to your advisor and the folks in your student services office.  Don't stop at the low-level folks; sometimes you need to hit the department head or associate dean level before you find someone who knows the proper mechanisms or has sufficient discretionary authority.

Comment by Dr. Bob on May 7, 2015 at 6:00pm

And, if your principles will allow it, don't rule out help from the churches.  We really don't bite, and whether it's through our social service agencies or local charitable support, we're not just there for our own members.  Again, don't stop at the low-level folks.  Office workers and others aren't always plugged in to everything.  Keep knocking on doors.

Comment by Unseen on May 7, 2015 at 9:41pm

I don't know where you are exactly. Is it Seattle? If Seattle is like Portland, I would think it has soup kitchens (there's one a block away from my apartment building) and several shelters. I'd think mothers with children get some sort of priority. If I were you, I'd be asking around.

I was going to bring up churches and other charities, too. Simply because you're an atheist, don't assume that Christians are bad people. In fact, I'd think they have a Christian duty to help you, though if I were you I'd start with the least of the Bible-banging sects like the Unitarian/Universalists or Episcopals.

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