I feel like I am secluded in the middle of the ocean, thousands of miles away from the rest of the world. The moon is the only visible light I see. My lungs work as hard as my arms and legs, yet I am barely able to keep my head above water. My energy is minimal, and I’m mentally sluggish, mildly incoherent. I’m uncertain how much longer I can keep up and fear the next wave will overtake me. The darkness only allows me to see what’s immediately in front of me. I’m terrified I won’t survive, but I continue treading.
With each breath, I fear it will be my last. The lactic acid building up in my muscles causes me to sink. It’s in this moment I realize I am capable of so much more than I presumed. I do what I can to survive. I place my body on top of the water and look up towards the dark sky. After some time, I begin treading water. My arms and legs feel rejuvenated and mentally, I am revived. I forget my wants and focus only on surviving. I am engulfed by enormous waves, but I always resurface just in time for the air to refill my lungs. My arms and legs work together to keep my head above water. I will not let this be the end. I will survive.
My body is tired and deteriorating from the constant movements to stay afloat. This is physically and mentally exhausting, and thoughts of giving up flood my weakened mind. The unknown is terrifying, and I remain fearful as I wait for the next wave to engulf me taking me as its next victim. I know facing darkness head on is the only way to survive. So I keep treading, pretending to be courageous of the unknowns hiding in the darkness. I remain hopeful, someday, the sun will shine.
I am hopeful one day I will experience a beautiful sun rise as it warms my body and comforts my soul. I yearn to see in front of me and no longer be plagued by the unknowns in the darkness. I understand darkness is inevitable, but I am confident it doesn’t have to be a constant. I refuse to allow it to be forever.
I look at my friends who appear to have it all. A life without waves and darkness…I can’t help but feel envy and bitterness. I want to experience some light…any light. I have to believe everything in life happens for a reason. I have to believe the darkness will eventually be replaced by light. I refuse to believe life will be this dark forever. I have to believe I will not always be in survival mode treading water.
Hope is what keeps me alive. Hope is the only thing saving me from drowning. It’s the one thing I cling to in my darkest moments when all other things fail me. It’s the only thing that saves me from the darkness. I am forever grateful for my experiences for they have molded me into the strong, assertive person I am today, but I am certain there is more to life.
I will keep treading through the darkness and fight like hell to keep my head above water. This darkness will not define me nor be the end of my story. I am strong and will rise above the darkest nights. I am hopeful one day I will be able to fully enjoy this beautiful life, a life filled with sunlight. That’s what keeps me alive.
So until then, I will keep my arms and legs moving so that my head remains afloat as that’s all I know to do in these moments.
I have to believe someday I will experience more of life’s beauties. I am hopeful one day, all the darkness and waves will ultimately lead me to the most beautiful sunrises and will bring me peace. I’m hopeful things will get better. I am hopeful my story is just beginning with more sun and less darkness. It’s my hope for a more beautiful life that keeps me treading.