There is no finish line

I saw something on Facebook today that resonated with me:

“I once said to my therapist after a particularly hard week, ‘I wish I could just fix all of my problems and move on to live a normal life.’ And he looked at me and said, ‘There is no finish line.’

Those words felt like a stab in my heart, but they were words that I desperately needed to hear. There is no finish line to my problems. It’s not possible to get through a certain point in life and have my problems simply disappear. And it’s unhealthy to think that way. Up to that point in my life, that’s what I though recovery was. I thought it was like working your way forward until it seems like your problems never existed in the first place.

The finish line does not exist. Instead, everyone has a capacity for recovery. You may never completely rid yourself of whatever causes you pain, but you will move miles from where you started. Don’t set your expectations too high and create that theoretical finish line in your life, or you will only end up chasing it. Instead, focus on your own capacity for recovery, and be proud of yourself for every step you take.”

—justavpdthings.tumblr.com

I have long felt the same way, that I just need to find the right form of therapy, apply it, and then move on to live a normal life. But I think it’s the wrong expectation.

I will never have a normal life. Whatever happened broke something in me, and it will never be mended to be as good as new. I will forever have these wounds, these scars, and they are what makes me unique.

They are the lens through which I see the world, my lens of experience. No matter what I do, I will always see the world through this lens, because of what I have gone through.

That is my unique experience in life, and it is not normal. It never will be, so I should stop trying to be. There is no such thing as to be completely healed. Life is not an RPG. I can’t esuna away all my ailments.

That said, I have progressed a lot since I was first diagosed with depression. While I still falter at times, I have become more confident at making my own decisions, instead on relying on others.

One of my strengths is analysis. I am quite good at gathering info to make a decision. Some will say that I spend too long at analysis. But this is their lens. I know what I’m good at, and analysis is my way of coming to a decision I won’t regret.

I have also come to learn and rely on an important phrase:

“This too shall pass.”

It reminds me that when times are tough, it won’t be forever. It also reminds me that when times are good, to not be too attached to it, for it won’t be forever.

Hmm. I should have realised it earlier. That “this too shall pass” also means there is no finish line. There will always be another race.

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