What are we to do with this pain that slowly eats us alive? What are we to say when words have come to mean so little? What are we to do when breathing in and out has become such a painful task? It’s as if the loneliness never ends… The pain never eases up… The lostness, the brokenness, the confusion… It is a suffocation. I will tell you, for this my friend is what I have done. This is how I have survived, and this is how I survive still. There aren’t any concrete answers, no handbook that you can follow. Just a decision, every day, to keep going, against all odds. You wake up. You keep going. You breathe in the sunshine. You look up at the sky and see it’s blueness, you hear the voices of the birds singing, and you smile. You put one foot in front of the other, you look around at all the other people around you, the ones that you have forgotten about, and you realize that pain is a feeling that everyone has felt. You cannot be a person and be void of knowing pain at the same time. It just doesn’t work that way. You realize and accept that the hurt will last forever, because this is the life we live, but that the joy will last forever too, because this is the life we live. It is a beautiful life, after all. Without sadness, how would we ever know what happiness feels like? Without darkness, how would we recognize the light? Without brokenness, how could we experience healing? Without unhappy endings, how could we know new beginnings? Without the bad days, how could we enjoy the good ones? I know, friend. You probably think I’m crazy, but I promise I’m not. I’m just a person who decides with every new breath I take, to survive. I’m just a lonely sinner, with a splintered soul, knees covered in scars, hands ridden with mistakes, a heart that continues beating even though it has been broken a thousand times, and eyes that search for the beauty in the midst of the muck. I know, friend, that some days it seems almost impossible to keep living. To keep walking. To breathe. To see. To speak. Sometimes, you’re positive that this is all that life is. That this is all it will ever be. A vast ocean of nothing but hurting people who hurt other people, abused people who abuse other people, pain that gives birth to pain, hurt that produces more hurt, and people with starving and hurting souls that go around and break and steal from other starving and hurting souls. But ah, what about those tiny moments, those moments that are barely recognizable, those moments that are impossibly microscopic, those moments… When you just know… There is SO much more life beyond all this hurt. There has to be. When you just know that there is a light somewhere out there that can swallow this darkness that your soul has grown so accustomed to. There has to be. Hold onto those fleeting moments. Those seconds in time that sustain your hope. Those glimpses of light that momentarily drown out the darkness. It’s these moments that keep us alive. It’s these moments that slowly repair our hearts. It’s these moments that introduce us again to the part of our souls that once knew an unshakable happiness, before the world caught up.