"Your Life Couldn't Be Meaningless if you tried."
A couple of nights ago, I came down with a rather potent case of the Sunday Night Blues. While I'm certainly no stranger to this weekly affliction that effects so many of us, this weekend's bout was different. I found myself not only grappling with the idea of another manic Monday just around the corner, but with all the manic little monsters that live inside of my brain, stirring me into a frenzy of fear that I somehow would fall off of whatever path I am on and never really have any "meaning" in my life. A bit about me if you don't already know it: I am a very big dreamer. When I am not extremely active in pursuing my big dreams, I usually fall into a slump. This is ultimately why I am inherently "busy" so often: I am usually trying to balance all the dream-chasing with my 9 to 5, extremely involved dog parenting and simply enjoying those beautiful moments of just breathing every now and again. The thing is, there is a good kind of busy and a not-so-good kind of busy, and recently I've felt overwhelmed with the not-so-good kind which has gotten in the way of my pursuit of the good kind. My to-do list has been overloaded with "musts" and "shoulds", all taking precedence over the "wants" and "would love to do thats." All of it has resulted in that awful, overwhelming feeling I get when I've stayed so glued to said to-do lists that I forget what dreams I even have in the first place, and start wondering if my life has or ever will have any of that elusive "meaning" I thought I was chasing but seemed to have lost while driving in a moment of darkness.
Finally, I revealed my deep dark panic to my fiance as we were getting ready to close our eyes and wake up to yet another Monday. As I explained that I was worried I would somehow evaporate into a boring and mindless routine of everyday chores, to ultimately conclude in death-by-meaninglessness, he looked at me and said:
"Laura, your life couldn't be meaningless if you tried."
Listen, I read a lot of quotes on the internet and am the proud owner of a plethora of self-help books, but nothing I have read or heard in a very long time has impacted me as tremendously as that statement. I remembered the truth that my inherent worth and value doesn't come from being a human doing, but rather comes naturally and without effort ... simply because I am a human being.
Certainly there are high-achieving, full-speed-ahead times when I'm firing on all of the best kinds of cylinders. Those are some of the best times, when my life feels invigorated and I feel truly and deeply aligned with my purpose. But sometimes, life gives us an interruption from this, and sometimes it's totally out of our control and in our best interest to go with the flow until the waves settle again and the coast is clear for us to keep on moving passionately onward. It is in those times that I know I am in great need of an extra helping of self acceptance, for this in-between place is where I am usually the most uncomfortable of all.
Earlier that day, Ben and I were unpacking some of our childhood books and photos from our parents houses having just moved into our own. We found one of his first grade yearbooks where he did a fill-in-the-blank type of questionnaire where he was asked to fill in things like "My president's name is _______," or "most fruits grow on____________." The last fill-in-the-blank question prompted a response that I tend to forget the answer to. When asked to complete the sentence "I am special because I am_______", there in adorable six-year-old handwriting was written the most perfect answer:
Life can get busy sometimes. And sometimes, I feel like I am walking very quickly without a clue where I am headed. I was glad to be reminded that even in the craziest, most confusing of times, the times where I can't seem to get a grip on what I'm desperately trying to grab onto, that I am inherently special. Like most six-year-olds know, it's really quite simple ... I needn't fear that somehow my life will wind up meaningless: I am special because I am me.