Remaining Hopeful in Hopeless Times


By Dawn Onley

It takes a tear about 5 seconds to work its way from the eye, down the cheek and to the chin, if you’re lying down. It requires effort to take deep breaths when your heart is thumping and your mind is racing and your nose is stuffed.

Or, so I’ve been shown. On many occasions.

It may have been the death of a loved one. Perhaps it was a breakup or meltdown. It could have been an authoritative figure who said something discouraging, when we were already feeling down, or a bully who made his victim scared to go to school. It could of been a tragedy of some sort.

I’ll bet many of us can point to things that momentarily made us feel hopeless and alone, scared or upset. It’s a part of life and the human condition. Still, no matter how terrible it was, no matter how searing the memory of it still is, we shouldn’t allow it to get the final say. We should not relinquish the hope of today for the painful memories of yesterday. We hold the power and we can choose instead to use it to honor whatever experiences we had to go through to get to where we are today.

Our trials shouldn’t get the victory, our triumphs should! 

Sure, this is tough to remember when we’re steeped in adversity. But when we look back at the distance from which we’ve traveled, we’ll see that the journey was too long and rugged for us to give up now, throwing up our hands in defeat. We need to take charge of our healing.

It doesn’t do us any good to stay stuck on a negative moment in our lives and to allow that moment to hinder us from truly enjoying life.


hopeAs adults, we have the ability to take back our lives. We can choose to be happy. We can choose hope. No matter what it takes – therapy, medicine, exercise, faith. We can start seeing the whole picture. We can elevate our minds and our attitudes. We can pray. And we can follow through with action.

We have the power, and we shouldn’t throw it away.

We owe it to ourselves.


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