Hope Springs

As I write this I keep glancing out my window–waiting on the snowpocalypse that’s supposedly coming our way. Weather kind of makes me laugh. It’s this inevitable topic–it’s always affecting us. Sometimes we talk about it cause it’s THE thing that’s happening. Other times we bring it up cause we can’t think of anything else to say.

This winter has been long and hard. So far it shows no signs of stopping. People keep saying, “Spring is coming.” Actually I’m included in those people–I’ve been saying that. But one bone-chilling day after another does challenge one’s optimism. I’ve longed so hard for this change of season. I need the sun and the warmth. And also, I think–the hope.

We’ve been in the thick of March Madness over here at the Bradley household. On Saturday night, our team, Michigan, had 3.6 seconds left on the clock with the ball, and was down by two points. I already had tears in my eyes looking at our seniors on the bench–agonizing over the realization that this was probably their last game. (Yeah tears are shed in our house on the reg over sports, and Top Chef–you got a problem with that?) My hubs saw my tears, got right up in my face and declared, “There is still HOPE, it’s ain’t over, there is still hope.” I looked right back up at him and whined, “No! Hope hurts too much, no more hope!”

About 30 seconds later Michigan inbounded the ball to our Senior leader and best player. He quickly dribbled up the court, drew the double team, and passed it off to a Freshman standing in the corner. Catch. Release. Three-Pointer. Swish. We win the game and are moving on to the Sweet Sixteen.

I’m not sure I’ve ever had sad blubbering flip to such ecstatic happy tears in an instant like that. If you’re not into sports you might read this and think, “Seriously, why do people care about sports so much?” If you are into sports–you get it. I had a real moment–the type I’ve been trying to collect and really be present in and feel lately upon the realization that life is terribly short. I called my Dad, he just kept repeating over and over “Can you believe that!?” I kept saying other things and still all he had was, “Can you believe that?!” I texted with my brothers, my sister, my mom. My whole family had all this incredible emotion over this team and this sport that we have collectively been watching my entire life. It was awesome.

I keep thinking about my response to my husband when he told me there was still hope. I think it’s true–hope can hurt. There are moments in life where I consider trying to live as a pessimist–or a “realist”, if you prefer. I’ve struggled with this since I was little–I don’t want to hope too hard, or have faith, or believe too much. Instead I want to cradle myself in doubt to soften the blow of inevitable failure and disappointment.

This past week I’ve been bringing up possible careers to my hubs–things I might do in lieu of trying to be a writer. Hope can feel heavier than doubt. 

I have faith that spring is coming–but then the cold breeze whips against my skin day after day.

I believe at the 5:00 minute mark that my team can pull through, but then they’re down with 3 seconds left.

I work for months and then years on a project–knowing how long it could take to turn into something coherent. Knowing the greater chance is that it never amounts to anything.

Hope can feel heavier than doubt. It can feel more difficult to carry and harder to hold on to.

But I’m not a pessimist. I’m not a realist. I’m a dreamer. Michigan’s win the other night reminded me that I can withstand a whole lotta lows–I can wait for the win because no matter how long it takes or how much it hurts, I remain a believer. The work, the heavy, the pain, the struggle–it’s always been worth it. The win, the finish, the Spring–I hope for these things–I believe in the inevitability of them even when I can’t see them.

Bring on the SNOWPOCALYPSE.

“It takes courage to trust, that the best is yet to come.”- Unknown

 

 

header: ornella-binni

 

22 thoughts on “Hope Springs

  1. qplourde

    I’m a realist and a bit of a pessimist…I wish I was more of an optimist or dreamer, but it never feels real to me. Keep up with the hope and I wish you the best of luck in your career success.

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  2. Oh my goodness. I watched this game. I’m not even a Michigan fan and I WAS GOING CRAZY. That game was insane! I loved when they showed replays of that same freshman making that game winning shot in a high school game, same angle, same weird V-leg jump haha! So cool! My equivalent to that was two seasons ago when The Cleveland Cavs (my team) came back from a 3-1 deficit and beat The Golden State Warriors right at the end to win the championship. They had NEVER won a championship and THERE. WERE. TEARS. Waterfalls, screaming, my whole family losing our damn minds. Having like 100 people text me congratulating me like it’s MY win. Which, honestly, it kind of felt like. You bring up a good point about hope. It’s hard for me too with writing. I’m in my 6th draft of a pilot, constantly sending out articles, it gets bleak. But then everything really can change in a split second. Great post.

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    1. Girl after my own heart, for real. Love finding other hoop fans!
      Alright, so my hubs and I are like CRAZY LeBron fans–so obviously that means we have been Cavs fans the past few years (the Knicks are our team but who are we kidding, they are aren’t winning anything in this century!).
      That series where they came back from 3-1, I will seriously remember it for the rest of my life. I actually draw strength from it on a regular basis–it was that inspiring to me.
      The way LeBron literally put that team on his back–and just defied everything that made sense in the world. They way they took one game–NO–one POINT at a time. It was fucking incredible. I bawled like a baby after that series!
      My mom’s family (13 bros and sisters!) are from Clev so obviously they were all going crazy and I was happy for them (although we all hate each other during football season!). Sometimes when things feel impossible, or I get down about what I am trying to do with my life, I think about that series–and just remember that it’s just one thing at a time. You can’t win it all in a day–and you’re gonna have losses along the way.

      At least you sound like you’re really working this writing thing. Some days I am doing ok. Other days, I am so freaking exhausted from my job that pays the bills–idk, it just gets hard. Today is one of those days!
      Was glad to read your comment though–thank you for it. It was a little boost today! thanks girl. x

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      1. I’m glad I could help with a boost! You may be jealous to know, I actually went to high school with Lebron! I was a junior when he was a freshman but it was so incredible to see the beginning of it all. We were TERRIBLE. A losing division 4 team then he came along and we went undefeated and won state! Have you seen the documentary “More than a Game”? So good and all about my high school. Happy to “meet” another fan!

        And I get it with work. I have been “lucky” enough to be laid off so I’ve been on unemployment these past three months which has helped me with writing. Also caused some anxiety too! But I remember those days coming home from work exhausted and having a deadline for a writing submission. It’s a GRIND. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Just take one assignment at a time and go at whatever pace you can. It’s obvious to me you’re a great writer so it’ll happen. Just let go of the timeframe! 😘

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    1. Thank you for this Steph! We are INSANELY excited over here. Have not been a very good blogger friend lately cause we’ve been obsessively figuring out how to make it to San Antonio. Finalized everything yesterday–we’re going!! SO excited. Thanks for thinking of me! ❤

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      1. OH, have a fabulous time–and that you’re working on this instead of your blog correspondence shows good prioritization in my book. CU women lost at the last second in the final 8 years ago–we were broken hearted, we were there, and would have gone to the final 4, so I am definitely cheering for you and Blue.

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  3. Hope for the best, expect the worst. I have probably lived by this most of my life, and I think it’s kept me from a great many disappointments. The other saying I truly use every single day, and my friends will tell you it’s a trade mark comment from me is, ‘It’ll be fine’. I use it more to keep my own mind positive, but I also see the calming effect it can have on others. If you say it with enough conviction, no one doubts it.

    I’m convinced a positive attitude can change any misfortune. It’s putting that spin on things to make it work. Being part of a sports team I’ve learned to take the good with the bad and see defeats as learning curves, you can always take something positive away, even from a bad game.

    Hope your team continues to smash it chick 😁 x

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    1. You’re the second person to mention that saying–hope for the best, expect the worst. I suck at doing that in my head–if I expect the worst, I’ll get it, almost always I think! I can’t simultaneously be optimistic and expect the worst at the same time! lol.

      Team is still smashing it!! Final Four! Traveling to see them this weekend!

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  4. Trust me – as a supporter of Welsh rugby from birth you have to be a dreamer!! I grew up with my head filled with the stories of great Welsh teams of the 70’s but had to live through 27 years (1978-2005) without a Grand Slam (this might all sound as confusing to you as anything basketball related does to me but I promise you we’re kindred spirits!!). I basically assumed I’d never ever see us win one. I’ve now seen us win three 🙂

    Weather still dominating here but for different reasons – still major drought conditions although the much vaunted and feared “day zero” where the taps run dry has been pushed back a bit. Still getting by on less than 50 litres of water per person per day…

    9 days until my Ultra and I celebrated by confirming my entry for a second tilt at the PUFfeR – a nice gentle 50 mile trail run in August with a somewhat “undulating” profile.

    See how much fun it is being a dreamer…?

    Great post as always – hope the weather breaks soon…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. OMG, I can’t believe you have seen your team win THREE, that is amazing! This particular team (Michigan (college sports)) I saw win it all once when I was 6 years old. Then we made it to the final game two years in a row when I was 8 and 9, but suffered heart crushing defeats (not sure if you follow American sports at all but there was an INFAMOUS time-out call by Chris Webber that most people know about and consequently relay pity upon you when they find out you are a Michigan fan.)

      We made it to the final game 5 years ago and the loss still haunts me–we were SO close. When your team gets close like that you realize what it really takes to get there–what a great big deal it is. I get emotional thinking about that team in 2013–it felt like no one believed in them but us!

      Who knows? Perhaps we’ll get my first one as an adult this weekend–someone has to win, right?

      I have heard a lot about “day zero” on podcasts and in the news. I’ve felt a bit confused every time I’ve heard about it–what exactly is going to happen on the day zero?!

      I have a feeling the day is coming sooner than we think–where Americans have to start facing problems that have been the rest of the world’s reality for some time.

      Alright–I am a terrible blogger friend and only responding to this now which means I’d say you’re about 2-3 days away from Ultra now?
      Are you ready? I am sure you are. You are always ready. I am excited to hear how everything turns out. And take pictures–that’s a thing you guys do in Ultras, right? Since you’re running for days on end and all!

      IDK Nik–I still say being a dreamer hurts sometimes. A lot. But–not sure there’s another way for me! x

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      1. I follow some north american sports but not with so much regularity any more but I will take it upon myself to google the Chris Webber incident!

        So in theory, day zero means that all running water at home ceases and you go and queue for your allotted fresh water at a water point. It will be utter chaos if it does happen (but on the bright side there’s a dystopian story or two for me at least!). Amazingly…it rained tonight so I guess it’s a start. And it’s my birthday so clearly it was meant to be!!

        Don’t sell yourself short as a blogger-friend – you got there before the race started which is all that matters! Yes – it’s on Saturday, picked up my pack this morning. As always I could have trained a bit more but I should get to the start line rested and injury free and that’s all that matters. I’ll try and get someone to take a medal picture at the end 🙂

        I agree – being a dreamer hurts, I’m already seeing it in my kids – but I think there are worse ways to be 🙂

        Thanks for the good wishes – I’ll definitely write about running or run about writing or something soon…!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Super interesting topic, and one I definitely find myself identifying with (surprised?? haha).

    I used to do the same with so many things – have hope it would work out, and then find myself with a heavy (I liked the use of this word) when it didn’t. Or more accurately, didn’t live up to my expectations. So I put the defensive wall up and decided to not let myself dwell on the prospect of a positive outcome too much (especially with dating – ya hear me!?).

    Then I was in a yoga class and for the first time, heard the word ‘detachment.’ It was a game changer and I’ve since tried to practice it with whatever I do. Hope for the positive, acceptance of the outcome – whatever that outcome might be.

    Let’s let ourselves hope for spring! Let’s just not be TOO disappointed if it takes another three weeks… Mother Nature seems to be a slow mover this year 😉

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    1. I am so glad you reminded me of detachment–something i need to practice although i can never seem to manage to hang on to the concept. I am the worst with expectations with people-even more than in situations. People disappoint me all the time and it’s really my fault! But I get you completely on putting that defensive wall up with dating especially–it feels so necessary to protect ourselves. Ironically for me, when the “thing” finally happened, it was because I finally let my guard down and was willing to get hurt. Like I wanted to make sure he was the right person and everything was perfect and we wanted the same things, blah, blah, blah–but I couldn’t know–I couldn’t have all of that until I let go. It’s a weird tough thing!

      Hangin’ in there with you–come on Spring! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve been the glass half empty kinda gal this last month or so!! The Hubs wants me to be excited about OUR new home, but I keep waiting for something to not go through??!! I told him I’ll get excited at closing. Sooooo, I’m holding out hope til next Wednesday and I’ll be that glass half full kinda gal!!

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  7. I love this post, it resounds fully with me. Spring is bringing me something I hoped and wished for, with every wishbone and birthday candle. Being realistic I accepted that this was my lot for now, easier as you to say, not to hope too much. Somehow though that little flicker burned away silently and is now igniting something wonderful. Never ever give up xxx

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