I firmly believe that it’s unhealthy to try to be 100% positive and happy 100% of the time. It would be lying to yourself. It would be lying to everyone around you. It would, believe it or not, hurt you.
I’m a big believer in mind over matter. I’ve taken very serious hits in the past 4 years, and life hasn’t backed off. I keep thinking it’ll pause and say “okay that’s enough for now, she’s not handling it too well”, but no, life has no remorse, it will continue to hit.
For this reason I say, it is okay to not be okay 100% of the time, and i’m speaking this through the heart.
I would say that i’m currently in rock bottom. Of course, life could always get worse, but I guess I mean emotional rock bottom. In this point in my life, this is probably the weakest i’ve been. And I know I write a lot about being okay with God’s plan (which, I still am, I promise), but I don’t think I write enough about the reality and rawness of going through life, taking the hits, and trying to keep telling yourself that in the end, it’ll be worth it.
The truth is, life’s biggest hurdle, our biggest struggle, is coming to terms with the fact that it won’t be easy and it won’t be everything we imagined it to be when we were children. When I was a little girl I wanted to be a fashion designer. I wanted to be a fashion designer more than I could ever express to you in writing. From the moment I could hold a crayon until about 10th grade- I was sketching and designing. That was all I wanted and what I was so very passionate about. I wanted to show my sketches to everyone I knew, the minute I finished them; of course, that took some time because, being OCD, I overanalyzed every fine line.
Then high school came around. I was in a medical magnet program because in middle school my parents made it very clear to me that they did not believe in my dream. They made it clear that I could not continue to sketch designs of clothes that no one will ever see. They made it clear that it wouldn’t make any money, and that it would be impossible to make it in that field. So, being the obedient child I am, I took what they said and gave up. I gave up the biggest and most passionate part of me- and I applied for the medical magnet program in high school, following the steps of my Aunt, (whom I looked up to so much at that point in my life – she dressed very well and was incredibly gorgeous. She carried herself with so much elegance.) who is a pediatrician. I knew nothing about what it took to be a doctor. I knew that I liked children, and I liked helping people, so why couldn’t I also be a pediatrician? And so, I worked towards that throughout high school. I became a CNA, a licensed first responder, and I entered into an externship program to further explore the world of medicine. During this externship, there was a pivotal moment that shook me and made me swear i’d never become a physician, for I never wanted to endure what this physician endured.
I was rotating through the hospital. This week I was in the ER. It was my first day and the nurse at the front desk was explaining to me what happens when a person gets checked in- green coding meant the person was fine (probably had the flu or such), yellow meant they were stable but that could change at any point, and red meant the person did not survive. There was one name in red that day, and I happened to take note of the name at that moment. The day went on and it was quite dreary, until a middle aged man frantically ran in and looked at me and said “i’m looking for my father, I got a call that there was an accident and he was brought here. His name is ____”. The minute he said the name, I promise you my heart stopped beating for a couple of seconds. I looked at him and said “one moment please.” and found the nurse and told her what was happening. She greeted the man with a smile and took him into the ER room where he will soon find out that his father has died.
The minute she took him back, I ran to the bathroom and immediately broke down. Why though? I didn’t know this man. I didn’t know his son. What I did know was, that man was at work. It was another average day. He had no idea that he was going to lose his father that day. One phone call changed everything and it was so unfair. I couldn’t handle the reality of life, and I knew I would never be able to handle telling someone that their loved one has died.
I didn’t care about logistics behind the fact that some doctors may never have to do that. I didn’t care about what my parents thought. I vowed I wouldn’t become a physician, for that feeling, is too much. That duty is too much for me, and I have an abundant amount of gratitude and appreciation for every physician that does this daily.
Well, I seem to have gotten side tracked here. The end of that story is that I stopped the externship. I ended up looking for other healthcare opportunities and ended up deciding it would be fun to shadow my dentist. And the rest is history from there.
But now, I’ve reached a point again where, I’m questioning if this is what I am meant to do? I’m beginning to wonder why all of these memories are flooding back to me? Why am I reminiscing on a childish passion?
On this very day, at this very moment, I am not okay. I hold up a tough front. I put my best foot forward and I make sure to never let my family see that I am crumbling. It is so incredibly difficult to feel incapable. I feel incapable, inadequate, and inept. I have been trying to pass one standardized exam for 4 years. An exam that everyone around me passed on their first attempt. Why? Why have I given up what I wanted as a child and endured so much to be where I am now, only to see that, once again, it may not be for me? Once again, I may not make this dream a reality.
Over the past 4 years there have been many failures, many times where I really should have been either held back or dismissed from the program. But for some reason, I was always given another chance. I was given chance over chance. I don’t understand it, and I know that we are not suppose to understand or try to understand what God is doing or why He is doing it, but sometimes that is really hard. Sometimes, it’s hard to be okay. Sometimes it’s hard to hold up a strong front.
But what can we really do? All I can think of is, accept that bad days come. Some days I will cry and mope about my life and how i’m not where I thought I would be. Some days will be great and filled with motivation and willpower. We just have to take it a day at a time, ride the waves of uncertainty, and pray for the will to continue. Pray for God to enlighten us, strengthen us, and keep our spirits up.
I’ve taken you through quite the whirlwind of emotion today, but I did feel like it was necessary. Like you needed to see that i’m not always positive and happy about the uncertainty in my life. So that, if by any chance, you’re also going through a rough patch, you see that it’s okay to not be okay. But the catch is, you can never let the sadness take you over. Mind over matter. Take an emotional break for a day, but the next day you must rise up and get to work and move forward. Take it a day at a time.
Remember, it will all be worth it in the end. It won’t be easy. But it will be worth it.