Sunday, August 24, 2014

i can do hard things.

this post has been marinating in my mind for a few weeks now. i've hesitated to actually sit down and write it because i have wanted it to be good-- to be empowering, to be insightful, to be full of heart. 
i'm not completely sure that i'll ever actually make the time to sit down and write something powerful, but just for my own sake + maybe the sake of my posterity or something, i'll start here. 

this summer, i realized something really, really important:
i can do hard things. 

i've heard the phrase tossed around for a while now, and it never really meant much to me. for years, i have just kind of experienced life as it's come. i've dealt with my struggles and celebrated my successes for a short time before moving onto the next thing, never really actually thinking about the significance of what i was going through. 

and then this summer, it's like every challenge i could possibly think of piled up and smacked me in the face. i started an incredibly rigorous/tedious/intense program at johns hopkins, with over 35 hours of class time a week (and then studying). i moved across the country, into a completely unfamiliar culture. i helped my husband complete the immigration process and prepare for interviews. i moved my little business into a new market, networked, and tried to balance work with school. i helped my husband adjust to life in the united states; i helped him apply for jobs and for school and worked with him in his quest to conquer english. i figured out all sorts of things that newlyweds just have to figure out. and then i got sick. really, chronically, frustratingly sick... again. 

there were so many times that i couldn't figure it all out... i couldn't figure out how one person could possibly bear all of it. how this little body of mine could overcome such stress and anxiety. how i could survive the summer, and be successful at that. 

but you know what? i survived. i did it. i can do hard things

i write this not to toot my own horn or tell you how awesome i am. i write this to reassure you, that in fact, you can do hard things too. you are stronger than you think. 
after i completed my last final a few weeks ago, i took a deep breath of that fresh (?) baltimore air, looked up at the sky, and sighed. i couldn't believe that i had survived... that i had passed my classes! that i had been able to make it through a semester of hell-- a semester that pushed me to my limits emotionally and physically on a consistent basis. i looked back on the countless hours of late night studying, the photocopying of birth certificates and leases and all sorts of other evidence to prove we're in fact in love and genuinely married, + all of the physical pain i endured. and just like that, my confidence boosted 115 percent... all because i gave myself a second and a half to be proud of myself.

i know that we're never given challenges too great for us to bear, although sometimes it may seem like too much. we can pull through; we can always pull through. and once we've crossed that finish line, oh, how good it feels!
if you're struggling or going through your own trials, please keep your chin up. know that it will all work out, in the end. i like to remember what my friend gordie b. says,
"it isn't as bad as you sometimes think it is. it all works out. don't worry.
i say that to myself every morning.
it will all work out.
put your trust in god, and move forward with faith and confidence in the future.
the lord will not forsake us. he will not forsake us."

lean on those who love you. let them help you. let them feel your pains for a minute. i cannot tell you how wonderful my husband, parents, family, and friends have been; it may seem cliché, but i could not have made it through without them.
keep your faith. do not lose hope in sunnier days.

treat (yo)self. seriously, take a second to breathe. to eat popsicles and nap and read your favorite book. sometimes, it's okay to let your guard down. and even cry a little (or a lot).

you can do hard things.
and although i'd love to say that this is a completely retrospective concept, it's not. maybe that's why i'm writing this, so i can revisit it in a few weeks or months or years. so i can be reminded. i'd love to tell you that i'm done with every hard thing in my life. that i'm out of school, that i have perfected the art of marriage, that i'm not still suffering from a very depressing, mystery illness. but none of that is the case. i have a long road ahead of me. so with that in mind, i'll just keep remembering this little nugget of strength:
behold, god is my salvation. i will trust, and not be afraid; for the lord jehovah is my strength and my song; he also has become my salvation. -2 nephi 22:2 

1 comment:

Aloicoius said...

You are awesome sister!