By Kim Cowgar
“Is it possible to find hope again?” I asked.
She simply said, “Yes.”
Until you are able to find it again yourself.”
I was in the midst of the days
Of bone-weary, aching darkness
Almost certain I would never see
The colors or feel the lightness.
There were days of stubborn solitude
And nights spent on the ward
Where chemical gods
Tried to make me whole.
If only it was that easy…
Quiet in the safe room with her
Gave way to tenuous moments
Of finding the emotions within
And letting them be felt on the outside.
Trust was built and tear flowed
As fears and secrets were unbound.
With chemicals and spoken words
We began to forge a path towards wholeness
With my guide still holding onto the hope
That my heart and mind were slowly taking back.
It started with a little understanding
Then came a little compassion.
Protecting and nurturing the child within
To find love for the woman I was becoming.
No more labels, no more self-deprecation.
No more seeing myself
Through the eyes of others
Or walking a path not of my choosing.
Am I completely whole yet? No
But, as I always hope to be,
I am a beautiful original work in progress
And in this authenticity
I find that I am good enough.
I found this poem in a news letter sent to me from the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA). Kim Cogwar’s poem was a finalist in the 2010 SPEAK and Be Heard…..Living with Depression Contest. I had the pleasure of attending the DBSA National Conference last year in Chicago where guest speakers included Kay Redfield Jamison, Myra Hornbacher, and Jesse Close with Bring Change 2 Mind. This poem makes me think about “holding hope.” Who do you hold hope for? Maybe you hold hope for a sibling or a homeless man asking for change on a street corner. It does not matter if you know the person that you hold hope for what matters is that you have the power. We can hope for anyone in any situation. I hope this season you hold hope for as many individuals as possible.
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Bless you all,