When you have legal problems, mountains of debt, bad relationships and a job that makes you unhappy, it’s easy to feel like there’s a point of no return, that this is how your life turned out and that’s that. I’m here to tell you that’s bullshit.
I can say that, because I’ve lived it.
I’m thinking about this after talking to a friend who allowed an addiction to get out of hand to the point where he’s now facing jail time. One of the points he keeps making is that if he goes to jail, his career is over. He won’t be able to provide for his family, and all will be lost.
I’ve felt like all was lost many times. I felt that way as a kid as the Crohn’s Disease shredded my insides and I simply assumed I wouldn’t live to see 30. I felt that way when my weight shot to 280 and I failed at one attempt after another to turn it around. I felt that way when relationships with friends and relatives snapped over the years. And I sure as hell felt that way when I was in a job I absolutely hated.
Yet here I am, with a job I love even after coming clean about old and frequently reappearing demons. I’m married with two kids and pushing 42 even though age 30 seemed unlikely in my teenage mind. My addictions can still be a knife in my side, but I’m having more success in controlling them than I ever have before.
That kind of blows the notion that there’s a point of no return to smithereens, in my humble opinion.
I’m betting my sister felt that point-of-no-return feeling back when she suffered from crushing depression. Yet this weekend I watched her getting married, looking happier than she’s looked in years, and thriving months into a new job.
I’m betting my father felt that point-of-no-return feeling in the months following his stroke last year. Yet there he was the other night, walking with the assistance of a simple cane — walker pushed to the corner — walking his daughter down the aisle and later dancing with her.
Yeah, life can seem brutally overwhelming sometimes. When you’re knee-deep in legal, financial or relationship problems, it can be hard to see coming out the other side with a better life.
But it happens. All the time. All it takes is the will to survive.
If you have that, then it’s never too late to renegotiate your life.