In everyone's life there are usually a few moments when they feel they can not possibly make it, they can't go on, they just can't do it.
For me, the birth of my daughter comes to mind. By hour twenty I wanted to give up. I didn't think it was humanly possible for me to continue. I didn't know how I was going to endure any more pain, exert any more effort, push any longer. I wanted to quit. I was begging for help. I wanted the doctor to save me from my hell by insisting a caesarean was necessary. I didn't say it out loud, but I wanted to. I imagine many first time marathon runners experience a similar feeling at some point during the race. That point at which you don't think it's even possible to take one more step.
In every scenario it ultimately goes one way or another. Either you take one more step, push one more time or you don't. You either will you body, your mind to go on or you stop.
In my story, the birth of beautiful, stubborn baby Alice was made possible by a wonderful support system. Left to my own devises, I would have quit. I would have waved the white flag insisting someone else do the work I couldn't. Thankfully I had the most supportive and powerful coach in my OB doctor. I can still, four years later, hear her booming voice demanding "Hard as you can! Hard as you can!" She was not allowing me to quit. My doula was at my side just about every minute of the twenty one hours. She made me feel so brave and strong. She showed complete faith in my ability to birth my daughter. Hatta was there, scared and unsure, but in awe of my strength. Together they told me how wonderful I was doing and what an amazing woman I was. I didn't believe them, if I had been doing so wonderful wouldn't she be out by now? But it was still the encouragement I needed to keep pushing. The marathon runner, I imagine if he had to run the race entirely alone completion would be unlikely. Even those that aren't running with friends find strength in the comrades running around them. Together a lot more is possible.
You may remember a few posts ago when I stated I was swimming in heavy, heart crushing thoughts. I'm still there, barely staying afloat. I was informed last night that not everyone enjoys my analogies, and if this is true for you, I really am so sorry, but I'm afraid I'm sticking with the swimming one. For, I am anchored in this pool. All around me, as far as my eye can see is heartache. And I am stuck. I don't know where to go, or even which direction is shortest. I remain where I am, treading water. I know I must swim soon. But where to? I could always swim back to the shallow end, I'll still be stuck in the pool, but at least I know I won't drown. Or I could take a leap and swim toward the edge and hope I make it. Hope I have the strength to swim.
I wish someone else could save me. I want someone to dive in and pull me to safety. End the pain I feel. If only it worked that way. Even though I don't want to, I have to do this on my own as hard is it may be.
What I hope more than anything, is that I have a few people poolside cheering me on, shouting words of encouragement when I need it most. I'm afraid once I start swimming, I may find the journey too treacherous. I may find it easier to quit, allow my head to sink beneath the waterline or swim back to the shallows. I pray that if this happens I have a friend who recognizes the distress I'm in and throw's me a life ring, if even just to momentarily hang on to until I can swim again. I know I will not make it alone.