You have to have faith...
(and now that song is stuck in my head)
My daughter likes to sing, and last night she came up with a “difficulty song”:
She sang, sitting in the back seat of the car,
"When everything is hard, and nothing works, just know everything is going to be okay."
It's not one of those things I always believe, but I felt proud that we have given her such an environment that she's confident in that belief. She said we could sing that song whenever we had a hard time. I asked her like when.
"Like when it's really rainy, and you are having a hard time getting places." This was appropro because, as she said that a huge rainstorm beat against the windows. We were trying to get from her horseback riding lesson to gymnastics class. Coming up with the song was a great way to deal with her anxiety about the very real possibility that the storm was going to make her late. She expressed her happiness, though, that we'd miss the stretching part because that gets monotonous, so she was seeing the bright side already.
It made me think about how outlooks on life and how important they are. To be so awesome that you come up with a coping song for dealing with difficulties.
I have to admit I'm not the most optimistic person. I'm a person of faith; I put my faith in that the universe will ultimately provide what we want or we are gearing towards; I have faith that obstacles are opportunities, that we can make prayer and ask for direction, and that things ultimately are okay. I'm not particularly religious or anything, but I, in general, do have faith. But faith and optimism are not the same things.
Her song can be a song of the faithful; you have faith in particular when you aren't sure things will go well. Her song expressed deeper confidence that things will be okay. I see faith as a being like bravery. Brave people feel fear. Faithful people feel doubt. It's the act itself, the orientation towards life, in which you, without any concrete reason necessarily to support that belief, have faith, or feel brave, despite your reticence.
In a way, you have to feel brave to feel faith. It's scary to think that things may not turn out okay, and brave to think then, I'll have to see how that obstacle can be an opportunity rather than get beaten down by disappointment.
So, when I hear my daughter sing, "When everything is hard, and nothing works, just know everything is going to be okay," my thoughts are, I don't know if I believe her all the time, but I certainly am willing to have faith that she's right.
Briefly by Melissa is a reader-supported publication. To receive new posts and support my work, consider becoming a free or paid subscriber.