Every morning when I wake up and I still feel pinned down by the weight of it all, it immediately feels like another day of failure. If I were a better person, I wouldn’t find it so hard to get out of bed, to face the day, to see the point in making it through to another night.
But what if that feeling doesn't automatically signal failure? What if it isn’t the end? What if it’s not even back to the beginning, but instead it just… is.
After two and a half hard long years of therapy, what if I can get on board with the idea that compassion is my new job?
In this new job, I will have to wake up every morning and make a new commitment on that new day that I will be compassionate to myself. It might look or feel a bit different to the day before, but the fact remains the same. Every day I will wake up feeling like it’s not worth it, like I’m not worth it, and I will make the concerted, proactive decision to be compassionate to that part of me and to commit to caring for it.
I will have to prepare myself for the reality that it will be repetitive, mundane, tedious at times. But perhaps that’s part of what care is. What love is.
And when I wake up every day and I feel crushed because here I am, starting the process again completely from scratch, I will have to dig deep and try to remember that those days before – although passed – haven’t disappeared. This day will build on the previous day, and will be the foundation for the next day. And so on, and so on. Maybe one day I’ll look around and realise I have built a whole compassion house. Or even just a wall, a house is probably quite ambitious for now.
Compassion is the acknowledgement of suffering and – perhaps most crucially – the commitment to take action to alleviate it. So as part of my induction, I’ve set a reminder on my phone every morning that says “Be compassionate today”.
I don’t know where this leaves me. I know how easy it feels to say these words and to read them, but I know how hard this will be to do.
Perhaps I’m not anywhere different at all. But perhaps if I can be here, without feeling devastated, disappointed, hopeless, helpless, worthless, pointless - that is the important thing for now.
Compassion is my new job, and I’m going to try to commit to it every day.
A Moodscope member.