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July 19, 2020

Why I’ve give up saying ‘It could be worse’ as no… actually ‘It could be better’

After all, nobody wants to be near somebody who is complaining or moaning do they? Stiff upper lip culture… I’m from the UK and it is a known fact that the brits are great at it – going back to historical times I guess. Get on your marching boots and off we go. I don’t buy into it all.  I think we seem to be split amongst us of those who like to appear to have ‘our shit’ together and the others who are a bit more honest but normally add the saying ‘It could be worse’
I grew up watching that.  Many having that instilled and conditioned into them. I too  in my darkest hours thought how there are people who are in worse conditions than myself and that it could be worse. During those times it was clearly what I needed to tell myself.  I guess to get through things we all need a little brainwash and as long as it’s not prolonged then I feel it’s not harmful.  Yes it’s true there are always people who are having some sort of situation worse. I have a roof over my head, warm (though at times in need of a repair) house, large garden, money left over after I’ve paid my bills and outgoings. Work I enjoy. I doubt I’ll ever be wealthy  and don’t really aspire to be as I’m certain that comes with other difficulties.  However, comfortable perhaps is a possibility and comfortable would be nice.   We have a lot of uncertainty in the world at the moment and yes being grateful for the present moment of being ok is good.  I have a partner who absolutely worships me.

It has not always been like that. I’ve started again from numerous stumbling blocks.  Like a war torn ship, I’ve lost excellent health, I’ve lost love and I’ve lost money.  I’ve been at rock bottom – losing it all at the same time.  I do understand not to give up the faith and I’ve been in situations where it could have gone one way or another. Rolled the dice and hoped for a six. Wondering if it was going to end on the one. I guess that is life and some times we can roll our dice and see what we end up with and it’s not too opposite a risk or chance. Other things in life are out of our control. There are other times we have the chance to roll the dice and we simply don’t for what ever reason. Happy to live a simple, slow and steady life and sometimes at the risk of unhappiness in areas – complaining about areas but not really changing anything and sometimes it’s not the right time to do so. We have to wait, trudge along just looking at our feet. I’ve been that person too… One marching boot in front of the other. Not stopping. Not listening. My soul probably suffocated and wondering when I was ever going to stop the pounding rhythm of boots.  Breathe in the good air, open my ears and listen to my soul.  Open my eyes and look around me and upwards at the sky not down.  Down at those trudging boots.

Through the losses, I’ve still taken the risks, risks to change things.  I always think of the saying if you are too scared to fall then you are not ambitious enough and I guess that is with all areas of our life.  Perhaps we need to lose love to find better love, lose friends to find better friends suited to us.  Lose money to learn gratitude and to build up to something better, something different.  Lose health – to slow down and re-evaluate.

Sometimes the risks I’ve taken have been absolutely necessary and  I see that now.  They’ve involved what ever way I walked down the road wasn’t going to be good. And I’ve taken the risks that meant the way was clear ahead a certain time and a really easy choice to make but looking back too the easy way is not always the way. That easy way can actually bring you to other obstacles further on.

I’ve also taken the risks I’ve taken that have sort of been easy. I left home at a very young age to the other side of the country and escaping a toxic family but I didn’t completely cut them off, I tried understanding and empathy even through a whole lot of pain.   That’s a whole different story and probably caused far more suffering down the end of the road because not everybody is prepared to do the inner work for healing. I guess I needed to learn that lesson too. Moved into the circles of what I thought was the perfect existence and to be honest for a while it completely paid off. I worked for a comfortable existence, good jobs, took little unharmful risks, changed workplaces even if it meant slightly less pay but normally that involved another climb quite quickly. Climbed the property ladder, taking more risks and was in a position to have my children reasonably young.
Looking back I guess having children quite young was a bit of a risk. It needed a bit longer because after my children I couldn’t be separated in a career woman sort of sense from my children so I took a risk and gave my career job up. Decided to try other things and study for a degree because I still have a brain and with the hope that when the children were of an age I’d be a Teacher.  I’d always wanted to be a Teacher and perhaps if I had stuck a bit longer in the toxic environment it would have happened.    That takes me back to how sometimes our circumstances make us choose risks that seem fairly easy but cause other problems.

I’m now a Tutor, fairly close to a Teacher but that is more of a choice because of health problems and health has to come first.  I’ve sacrificed enough health to get to this point.  I’ve learned it’s not always worth playing that risk dice game all of the time and I’m fairly lucky to have that choice. Not taking it for granted after all.  Life is a learning curve and it could be one of those more difficult risks further on down the line. But my wits are telling me to stay put for now.

The time I took a leap of faith with three children and I was quite poorly, into the unknown was my biggest risk as it didn’t just involve myself. That was one of those risks that meant it was going to be a long road of hardship no matter what and there are certain risks looking back that I regret. Risks to my health physically and mentally. Hind sight is a great thing because looking back there was an easier route. Should have… Could have… mainly it would have been to change the environment around me, focus on my own health and wellbeing. It took me far too long to reach that point of risk – letting people go.  For too long I allowed other people and their judgements hinder my life, judgements based on their own capabilities or inabilities. My priority should have always been my health, my families health  – the rest would have followed with that level of trust not fear. I’ve learned the most difficult way that sometimes you have to do what is best for yourself especially if you have the opportunity to do so.
We talk about change and if we are not happy about something then we should change it. But there are times when it’s not possible or there is real fear holding somebody back and it’s not always right to judge. I’ve had the joy of reward in working for Charities that support families with social issues. Had training in areas such as Domestic Abuse. Admittedly it was against women not men and we all know that men can suffer too but this was about women. I’m certain this is only one area that makes it difficult for people to change their situation.  Acceptance and normalising situations at times is exactly what happens.
And so the words begin ‘It could be worse!’
There is always somebody who is having it worse. You don’t need to change anything because there are people having it worse.

However, there are people who are having it better.
So now I tell myself, it could be better.

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