Don't fall asleep with gum in your mouth.
Listen to your gut.
Don't marry someone because everyone else thinks you should.
Do your best in school.
Is there a list somewhere that I can check off as I learn life's lessons? Is there a master sheet of lessons that lets me know when I am finished, or what I have yet to learn? Oh, I know there isn't; that would be too easy. It would take some of the misery (yes, I meant to type misery, not mystery) out of life, and life is meant to be chock-full of misery, so that we can recognize the joy...right?
I'm veering slightly off topic. Let me veer back.
I'm hoping that learning a few things along my rarely-merry way will get me to the finish line all that much faster. Or something like that.
I learned long ago to accept help. That one is still hard. Especially when the help is with something that embarrasses you that you haven't done on your own, or at which you are not a consummate pro. So I grit my teeth that are embarrassed and shine the ones that are so, SO thankful for the help, and hope that indeed, those rendering the service are blessed in return far beyond that which they rendered. This happened today, and last week, and I'm afraid will need to continue to happen from time to time. It's so hard to accept help and not feel like a loser. It's easier when I think of how blessed those who help will be for their selfless acts.
When I see old people out and about, I mean really OLD people, who have to be dragged and toted about by their already aging children, I have always thought, "Why not just leave them home???"
It hit me this week how awful it is to be in the same rooms all the time and never go anywhere. It's taken nearly three years, but I'm finally stir crazy. These past few weeks of being sick, the past month or so of not being able to drive myself anywhere have finally made me feel trapped. I get around inside the house okay, but no where to sit is comfortable. Nothing is interesting, or important or interesting. I have no sense of purpose or potential accomplishment.
I understand stir crazy. I understand puttering. I understand why old people need to be taken out and about. This is, of course, part of a bigger lesson; tolerance for the elderly, compassion even. I'm getting there. I'm getting better. I worry that it involves when they are behind the wheel of a car as well, but I also hope that is one of my "closer to the Pearly Gates" lessons.
Which leads me to one of the bigger things I think I stared down this week, but in no way wish to imply to the universe that I now think I can handle it, because I can't.
Depression. I've struggled with depression and anxiety most of my my life, I would say, but this past week, being trapped alone at home, being sick and unable to eat, I found myself staring down the abyss. I truly felt like I was at that place where there was no where else to go. I've always denied that I had a choice in the matter, but this week, with the silently-typed words of encouragement of a wise friend, I was able to make a choice. I put it in the Lord's hands, admitted that I cannot do this, and read my scriptures for quite a while. Am I still depressed? Yes, of course I am. But I know there is a very real precipice, and for my little part, I was able to turn and face away from it for just a bit. Can I stay facing away from it?
One day at a time.
One day at a time.