There’s a quote I often think of:
“When you’re going through hell, keep going”.
Apparently Churchill said it. Through hell. Through. I like it as it acknowledges that the current place is hell, but, each step brings you closer to leaving hell behind; that hell can be escaped from but it’s going to be hard work. So if we can summon the strength to keep going then the flames will not consume us. We will not let them.
The other story I’ve been thinking about is We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury. In the children’s tale a family go on a bear hunt and on their quest they encounter various obstacles. As they reach each obstacle the conclusion is the same:
“We can’t go over it.
We can’t go under it.
We’ve got to go through it!”
‘Ain’t that the truth? That seems like the only way to leave the past behind. I can’t go over it, I can’t go under it. Oh no. I’ve got to go through it. That’s not good news is it? The only way out is through. Through DBT, through nightmares and flashbacks, through medication, through excruciating examination of my thoughts and actions. But what if I don’t make it? What if I fall and flounder and stay stuck in hell? Well, I’d have to die. I couldn’t live like this forever. As a I write this my vision is disturbed by strange sort of bright pulses. I feel sick. The creeping sensation covers my neck as if invisible ghostly hands are touching me.
Speaking of living, there’s a song lyric that gets stuck in my head.
“If you live through this with me, I swear that, I will die for you”
The song is called Asking For It by Hole, Courtney Love’s grunge band whom I did go and see live back in 1994. This lyric resonates with me as it feels like my two selves, my two minds trying to barter a deal. Like Reasonable Mind is trying to implore Emotional Mind to perhaps lay off the suicide stuff. Let me live and, when the time is right, I will die. I agree to that. The person I think of when I hear this song is my 14 year old self. The person who had to Live Through This. (Not surprising really as I was 14 in 1994!) Unfortunately she’s been calling in her debt and thinks that having lived through this it’s the time to ‘die for you’ bit. She’s wrong though. This isn’t the time to die. This is the time to live, or to try. At least to try. To keep going. There can be a good life I think. I’ve just got to go through this. Not under or over or roundabout. Through.
I really hope there’s something good on the other side because this journey is hell. I hope it’s not a sodding bear!