I fell in a hole last week. In fact, I’ve had some challenges in some very important relationships in my life over the last few weeks. But last week, instead of trying to climb out of the hole, I just sat there. One of my challenges presented when one of my closest friends admitted to me that he had been cheating on his live-in girlfriend of 5 years. He knows my story and has walked with me through some of my darkest days. His confession hit me like a ton of bricks. It was a major emotional trigger that came in the midst of some other major (I mean major) relationship changes in my own life, oh and a 2 day stomach flu.
I wish you could hear the downward sucking vortex sound that immediately encompassed me.
The questions washed over me. Is anyone loyal? Is anyone honest? How does one human do this to another? How did I end up alone at 45 years old? Does integrity exist in the human character? Will I ever find someone who will not betray me? Should I just give up on the world now? The questions and thoughts got darker and more pitiful as the days went on. I sat in my subjective self-pity like a pig in the mud.
What did I do? I reached out to my supports. I journaled. I was honest with my friend. I felt my feelings, and there were a lot of feelings…
Then with the strength and encouragement from others that I could not muster for myself I began to read and listen to positive messages.
In philosophical discussion I believe we would all agree in the polarity of the world we live in. There is no light without darkness, no north without south and great joy without sadness.
There is no loss without gain. I had the information. Now I had to ask myself the questions. The quality of your life is based on the quality of questions you are willing to ask. Where is the gain in these situations? Where is the gift?
I had to stop being so subjective. What could I observe objectively and apply? There are so many lessons and growth opportunities in the last few weeks of my life. I had to figure out how to harvest the good.
What did I gain from the loss? What joy can be found in the midst of the sadness? I had to shift my perspective from subjective (poor me) to objective (what can I observe and learn from this).
We are all going through something. If you’re not, you’re lying to yourself or you’re not human. There’s a saying about getting the shit end of the stick….notice it’s a stick which means the other end must be clean. I would challenge you to grab hold of the clean end and start moving forward and I will too.