Looking upward

20181122163237_IMG_4638 (1)I am writing because I have to write. Part of what creates healthy emotional balance for left-brained folks like me is to write. At least that is what the experts say.

However, it has been a while since I my last post. I’ve written, but I haven’t posted because I wasn’t happy with what I was saying. I’m not sure I am now, but I feel balanced enough to push something out.

This process of recovery has been hard. It will continue to be hard. There, I said it. Processing a job termination at the same time as looking for a job requires a longer time horizon view than I am used to, because otherwise I would seriously doubt the purpose of life. I have to constantly look up – at God, at my blessings, at nature – to drag myself out of depression, negative thoughts, self-doubt, and the nagging questions that still recirculate in my brain about what I should have done differently.

My drug of choice? It is fairly balanced between nature and family/friends. The picture on this posts illustrates a post-Thanksgiving sunset hike with my sister and many nieces, which was a beautiful combination that accelerated me towards mental healing. I have done other hikes with my family and other friends, and it is a part of my trying to include relationships in what I usually enjoy alone. Why? Because a major learning for me in this painful experience is that I need to prioritize relationships more. This applies to both work and outside of work, but since I can’t practice it at work without a job, I’m left to practicing it with friends and family.

I am still trying to figure out what prioritizing relationships means practically. Changing neural pathways is hard, and if I have to put silver lining on this cloud, it is that it has driven me to change faster than I would have without the pain.

I am surrounded by blessings. I continue to count them and deliberately enjoy them much more than I did a year ago. And slowly, but surely, I am crawling out of my depression and stepping more confidently forward. I still have bad stretches where I let lack of communication or opportunities get me down. What is different is that instead of self-soothing with another Netflix binge, I plan to get together with a friend and talk hopefully not about myself.

The world is filled with fascinating stories, people, places, and events. I have to continue to look upwards at them to stay on my recovery.


Categories: Uncategorized

1 reply »

  1. First of all Paul, I commend you for your vulnerability, and for having your “drug of choice” be nature & building relationships. It’s never pleasant being in God’s refining fire, but when He purifies is as gold and creates beauty out if the ashes of our lives, that is when we can look back and finally make some sense out of the pain. I know I’ve grown in ways I never thought possible, and as I’m finally starting to see some of God’s purposes and prayers come to fruition, it has strengthened my faith and confidence. That is my prayer for you, that you be able to learn the lessons He has for you while in that fiery furnace, so when you emerge, you will radiate God’s power and glory. Remember it’s when we are weak that He is strong!

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