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Chris Hayget elephant’s newsletter

Here’s my reality:

I’m a 33-year-old unmarried, childless, creative type who works 55-plus hours a week between two jobs—which I love even though they try my patience daily— while living back at home with my parents, because well, life is expensive and I’m tired of dancing with the debt devil.

I spend roughly 90 percent of every day feeling exhausted, burnt out and unable to find the energy to do anything that isn’t a basic human function. I dream of naps and chocolate, but usually only find my way to one. Most days I feel like I’m juggling knives while simultaneously trying not to stab myself in the face.

Most days I feel like I’m low-key failing at life.

Here’s my truth:

Even on my worst days—when I want to cry and can’t find the energy, when the thought of turning on my computer or driving to the office feels like leading a small war-torn nation, when my only exercise consists of walking to the kitchen for that glass of water I should’ve drank two hours ago, when I am lonely and tired of taking care of myself by myself, when I long for a space that is entirely mine and void of human contact, when my one day off is a blur of errands and appointments and highways, when my one day off is nothing but naps and Grey’s Anatomy marathons, when I wonder if my life will ever not feel like something I’m trying to handle—I remind myself that I’m doing the best I can.

And sometimes, the best I can do is nowhere near where I want to be. But here I am—being human.

And on the days when being human is all I can manage, I read words from other humans who have failed and cried and zombie-walked through their days and lived to tell the tale. Reading these quotes is my version of self-care. Some of them are inspiring, compassionate words meant to make me feel less alone. Some of them are bold, brutal and meant to kick my ass into high gear.

But they all remind me that even when I feel like I’m failing, I’m also still here…still fighting…still trying.

1. “Some damage is too severe, some harm endures. And what you have to do is accept it. And by accept it I mean, don’t be the paralyzed person in the bed who is waiting to walk again. Realize, it’s never gonna happen. And find some other way to get around—swing from a vine, get a Mad Max wheelchair. Anything but…wait.” ~ Augusten Burroughs

2. “Life is hard—not because we’re doing it wrong, just because it’s hard.” ~ Glennon Doyle Melton