What does the word “life” mean?
It’s what you’re born with. You exist in it all day, every day. All year, every year. It is what you have until you are dead. It is your only true job on this planet and you are responsible for it. Sounds like a lot, doesn’t it?
Especially when you have depression, life can feel like an enormous task. It is one huge commitment and none of us signed up for it, really. We were just born and with that first breath we unconsciously said ‘yes’ to life.
Now, what does the phrase “fight for your life” mean?
You hear it when someone’s been in a car accident or when a doctor diagnoses someone with a terminal disease. In a fight with a lion you fight for your life. In a fight with a person you often fight for your life. But is it something we only do when we are faced with death?I don’t believe so. In fact, I believe that we fight for our lives every minute every day. Everyone fights for their life all the time, but to those struggling with depression, that perspective might ring even truer.
By opening your eyes in the morning, you fight for your life.
While stumbling out of bed and into the shower, you fight for your life.
By eating breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you fight for your life.
By walking to school, driving to work, waiting in line, waiting for a bus, waiting for the news to come on, you fight for your life.
In talking with others, you fight for your life. In loving others, you fight for your life.
See where I’m going with this?
Most of the time I am not happy and I certainly do not feel like breaking into song when I see the sun shining in the sky. I am more likely to leave my shades drawn because I’m too lazy to pull them open, but somewhere in the back of my mind I’m aware that the sun has risen today. It made the effort. I don’t know how the sun does it, but it does it.
The grass grows and my hair grows, my cat sheds his fur and my email inbox fills itself up. There are bills and paycheques and rain and sun and day and night. Change is happening absolutely everywhere. The world is spinning, and I’m a part of that.
I don’t know why I’m here on Earth or even if I truly want to be here, but I do know that I can handle taking this breath and just maybe, the one after that. And if I think far enough ahead and think about every thing that I have to do today, my soul puts on its boxing gloves. I’m stepping into the ring, fighting death, fighting adversity, fighting people who try to knock me down.
I have been alive for twenty-six and a half years. How long have you been alive? Count the years, count the months, count the minutes. Count the seconds that you have breathed for. That is one hell of a long time and you should recognize that. And if we’ve both been fighting for our lives for this long, can’t we go on a little bit longer? Maybe if we fight together and acknowledge that it IS a fight, it will help us keep going. It isn’t easy but hey, we’ve made it this far.
Every day we have a choice and when we choose to keep going in even the smallest of ways, we fight for our life and we are worth it.