There are times in life when you will feel tired and weak, lonely and forgotten. You will feel abandoned like an empty house, cut from the root like an old tree, faded like a once beautiful flower… At those times, you might lose faith in yourself, lose hope in the future, lose trust in life. You’ll certainly look back at your past feeling sorry and nostalgic, and you will probably look at the future feeling scared and discouraged. And as cliché as what I am going to say now might seem, those are actually the times where you need to fight the most.
I think we all like to believe that we are fighters somehow, that we have got all the strength we need to get through life, that we are bold, fearless, brave and mostly patient. Perhaps we like to believe so to boost our self-esteem and feed our ego, perhaps we have been told so by others, and perhaps we have been in situations where we did prove how strong we are.
But what happens to us when we fail? What happens to you when everything you have worked for gets broken? What happens when your dream gets destroyed somehow, when you try your best and yet it is still not enough..? Do you break into tears and crawl in your bed crying? Do you lock yourself in your room and refuse contact with the others? Or do you go out and spend the night in the city wandering, laughing at the silliest things, drinking your sadness away?
How do you heal such pain? How do you gather the pieces of a shattered dream? How do you face yourself when you think you’re a failure?
The more we succeed in life, the less we think of failure. It simply does not become an option anymore. We trust ourselves, and our talents, and naively believe that luck will be by our sides, that life will not let us down. And then out of nowhere, it hits us, we fail. We run out of time, we get overwhelmed, carried away. Our skills fail us, others get better, while we simply get nowhere. And before we know it, our name becomes just one among many others, and our dreams get further, more unreachable…
I know how these times can be because I have been there. I failed when I least expected it, when I least needed it. I failed and couldn’t accept it, couldn’t get through it, and I thought life has nothing to offer but disappointment and sorrow. If you are reading this, I hope you never relate to what I am talking about, I hope you can’t even picture it in your mind, but if you did, and one day you will, because it’s inevitable, please consider what I am going to say. You’re not alone in your battle, and certainly not alone in your despair.
Don’t get fooled by the laughter at the restaurant, by the smiles in the pictures, by the sunsets on Instagram and the happy quotes on facebook. Don’t get fooled by what life is not, but how we want it to be, how we try so hardly and so miserably to shape it according to our fantasies. You are certainly not alone. Look around, everybody needs help. Look closely, there’s a tear from last night in those deep blue eyes. There’s a scar around that crooked smile, there’s a wound inside that happy soul. There’s a battle everywhere you go, in everyone you know.
It starts from our mothers. All the battles of life are inside our mothers; the battle with time, money, patience, sacrifice, they are all present inside the one soul that gives selflessly, and loves endlessly. And then, there are other battles, and fights, and heartbreaks, and many many failures. You have gone through one of them, congratulations!
The rest is yet to come, the best is yet to come. You did not fail because you are not good enough.
Perhaps you didn’t try hard enough, or maybe you went beyond your powers, but either way, you failed for a reason. I wish I had known this before giving up to despair and going through a depression, I wish I had known nothing stops at one stupid failure. But little did I know, little did I understand. And everything I claimed about myself, all the ways I thought I was strong and patient, all the stories I told about how I would never give up to life whenever it knocks me down, they were all wrong.
I failed and lost hope, gave up, and gave in.
And whoever is reading this might relate to it somehow, because we simply can’t escape the setbacks of life, the number of times things go wrong and unlike what we pictured at all. And yet, only now I realize that I have been offered an opportunity, a gift, a blessing, by failing.
Only now I realize that I still have so much to learn, and that not only can I be who I dreamed I would, but also who I dreamed I could never be. I’ve got sadness that equals a mother’s love in my heart, limitless, endless.
I’ve got fear that stops me every single day, I’ve got a scar as wide as the sky, as deep as the darkness at night. And yet, I choose to keep going in life, I choose to fight and struggle and find a purpose, I choose myself with all the frailties that I could possibly have.
And I believe that someday, out of nowhere, the sun will set beside me, and you who resembles me.
The sky will get closer, and we will reach it with our hands. And all the bad memories, the pain, the tears and fears, will go away. As we lay down next to the sky, next to the sun that waits for the moon, we’ll know that this is why we failed, and this is why our best was not enough one day.