Posted by: hope_rising | February 23, 2010

Finding Hope simply

It’s hard to believe an entire year has passed since the epicenter of my crisis of faith. 

It was odd to walk around the world with no hope.  The absence of direction and objective left me wanting at the end of everyday.  Most things seemed harder.  Work got very difficult. Things around the house seemed to be breaking more often and I was content to leave them that way. I spent less time talking to people, feeling I had nothing real to say. I slept each night, with an ache in the center of my chest, that no matter what I did I could not relieve. Days were just passing time for me.  I did anything I could to not think. If I was home, the tv was on, if I was out and about I had buds in my ear, in the car tapes of inspiration looped constantly. 

A friend from the east was coming into town for business, and was going to stay with me a for a few days. This was a great distraction. I sprung into Martha mode. I made baskets with toothbrushes and toiletries. Fluff and folded the towels. Change out the sheets. Picked out candles to make the house smell pretty. Took the dog to the dogwash. Cleaned and straightened the house. It felt so good to have a goal, an objective; something to look forward to.

Our visit was lovely. The zoo membership came in handy, and the new baby panda and  baby giraffe were a sight for sore eyes.  The fresh air did me a world of good. Later, sitting on the couch;  cozy blankets, sleepy socks, and a cup of tea and  in hand, we indulged in an evening of girl-talk. She spoke candidly about her divorce and feeling overwhelmed in the days and months that followed. She said she would sit on the couch looking at all that needed to be done, feeling uninspired to do anything. Then one night she started making a list of everything she could see that needed to be done. At least it was an accomplishment. Then she started making lists of things she couldn’t see, but still knew could get done. Then she started doing the little things on the list that didn’t take that long. One thing lead to another. Completing smaller tasks lent some momentum to starting larger tasks. Eventually, in time the list was completed.

That night, we started a list for me. Just sitting on the couch, look around, what needs to get done. It didn’t matter how small. Re-arrange the snowman collection in the curio cabinet. Sort through all the old magazines making a keep and donate pile. Take magazines to donate to library. Finish the floorboards and trim around the room. Get window treatments. Just sitting on the couch and looking around, the list came easy. And I did feel accomplished. 

Our visit came to an end, but my list making did not. The best part was that sitting on the couch counted as forward progress so  long as I was making my lists. As was predicted, some of the smaller things managed to get done and get crossed off the list. With each accomplishment, there was a shift. Not a bustin’ out, show me the hope shift, but a shift none-the-less. I did as many of the things that could get done on the couch as I could. I sorted pictures and magazines. I brought dresser drawers out to the couch and went through their contents, making a keep, donate, toss decision for each item and putting them in the appropriate pile.  I started adding a trip to Good Will to my ride home from work as the donate bags started to fill. 

By and by, there was space where clutter once was. When I got ready for work in the morning, the drawers in the bureau closed without a fight, I found clean coffee cups  lined up like dutiful soldiers in the cupboard. The car keys were predictably right by the door in their new organizer box.  Suddenly I wasn’t running out the door late. No, I was leaving right on time. I wouldn’t say at first that things got easier, but I will say they got less hard.  It was enough to feel more of a shift. I felt a little more purposeful, a little more organized. Much like my friend, the momentum started to build and  more things were getting accomplished. Sleep came easier at the end of the day, as there was less regret to shoo out of my mind. Feeling more rested, made things at work easier to manage. And on it went.  The passages of inspiration that I listened to on the way to work, were starting to cross my mind throughout the day.

More items were crossed off the list causing more little shifts in my spirit and providing inspiration to keep going. Without even looking, hope started to find its way back to me. I started to have some investment in the outcome of some of the projects around the house. My workout routine started to re-take a familiar form and I found myself working towards fitness objectives.

A year later, here I am writing about hope.

What seems apparent to me in hindsight, is that when hope feels far away there is comfort in the simple things. The manageable things that in better days are taken for granted and performed with ease, in these times may take all my strength. There is honor in using all my strength to do them.  Those simple things and that strength from within have become the pave stones for a new hope, a new desire. Taking care of business and taking care of now, is at times, the most hopeful thing I can do.

here’s to hope



  1. Very inspirational. Thank you!

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