I’ve been amazed by the people around me this past week.
Everyone is dealing with something, whether they are haunted by the past or struggling with the present, buried in experiences or emotions or injustices. And yet, each person continues to raise their head above the surface, treading water until they can find the next rock to rest on.
That’s honestly what life is: a series of rocks. Sometimes you don’t see the rock, and slam into it, and your body suffers the repercussions of the dark waters, scuffed and bleeding and weaker than before, leaving you with a fear of the rocks to come. And sometimes you narrowly miss the rock, and hope that those behind you can hear your calls of warning. And sometimes you see a rock coming, and you swim to it, and you have never felt more peace than the moment you reach it, your muscles releasing all their tension as you rest. Sometimes the rock still bites at you as you hold onto it, scraping your skin, but it’s better than drowning. You just have to gather enough energy to make it to the next rock.
It’s not always the rock (I mean, sometimes it’s the rock – sometimes the rock is jagged and covered in barnacles). Sometimes the murky waters make it worse, or other distractions that steal away your attention. One person’s obstacle is another’s resting place.
But our experience with the rocks cannot be changed by others’ experiences. We can only hope that the rocks will get smaller and smaller, and in time turn to sand under our feet, and the water lapping at our necks will slowly recede until it’s at our ankles.
You, who have just left your last rock, and are treading water: you are brave, you are wonderful, and the swimming will get easier as you go. And you, who have found your next rock: take a moment to rest, and navigate where you are in this ocean and what you’re dealing with. But don’t forget to move forward.