Read This When You’re Feeling Hopeless

Hope is like a light that flickers. You work hard on keeping it alive. It’s this thing that can keep you going when everything becomes impossible. It’s this one thing that keeps us going in times of adversity. And sometimes, you wake up and you don’t find it; sometimes the light gets dimmer until absolute darkness seeps in. Your heart beats but you take it for granted because, right now, it feels hard to exist. Hope is nowhere to be found. Hope feels like a distant dream. And you lie there. You lie there for days or weeks or months trying to remember the things that make you hold on to life or the person you used to aspire to become. You try to bring it back, but that’s the thing about hope—it fizzles out with every defeat, every rejection, every moment of heartbreak, and every moment of inadequacy. The light that flickers no longer flickers. It’s been blown. 

And sometimes you’ll spend a long time remembering what it is like to have hope. Sometimes you’re not going to even feel like remembering because your soul is so crushed. And that’s the thing—even if you mentally know that things can get better, you just feel like you are paralyzed, like you can’t rise up for another round. You are exhausted. You stop but the world runs and leaves you behind. It feels like you’ve fallen from the highest building and it’s never when you expect it to happen. And even if I tell you a million reasons as to why you should feel better one way or another, I can’t change how you currently feel. 

All I can do is remind you that as long as you live, there’s still a chance, even if you’re so, so tired of trying. I am here to remind you that your heart was once happy and light. As long as you’re alive, you have a chance to win. People can be kind. It’s the kind of kind that gives you hope in humanity. The world is full of people trying to do something good, and sometimes, just sometimes, they actually succeed. There’s still ambition. There’s still love, even if you don’t currently see it. It exists—it always has and always will. And that to me is a token of hope. It’s a token of hope that no matter how hard it feels right now, there’s a chance for change. There’s a chance that this light flicker can become brighter and eventually illuminate a whole city. 

So when you’re tired, give yourself permission to feel this way. When you’re tired, give yourself permission to go slow, to feel the defeat, and to heal. When you’re in total despair, try asking for help over and over. When you lose all your dreams, when you lose hope, when you lose everything, sometimes you come back fresher, sometimes you come back with fewer expectations. And at times, this is the moment you start to truly move forward, because you shed all the tears, the expectations and turmoil. Sometimes, you lose hope, sometimes you lose the thing you wanted the most, but that doesn’t mean you have to lose yourself. You can always come back to yourself. That’s the only thing you have control over. There were times when you were brimming with hope, times when your light shined so bright, times where breathing felt light. So for now, try to remember this, until your heart gathers the strength to rise for another round. For now, just breathe, just exist. Remove all burdens from your heavy soul. I hope you make it and I hope you come back with an open heart and a stubborn heart. But for now, lie there and heal. For now, the light might have disappeared, but I hope it comes soon to tease you, because no matter how many times you’ve been knocked down, trying has always been the journey, even if you never reach your destination.