An Open Letter to the Weary and Burnt-Out

This is the actual transcribing of a letter written to a friend, who may easily represent the majority of those I write to here.

Burnt-out, weary, frustrated, and a bit depressed that the transformation is not as easy as I make it out to be, applying it to one’s own life, the correspondent sent me an email describing friendships and relationships that were not yet….healed.
The writer expressed their frustration for the people who didn’t have the same mindset and thus couldn’t notice they were free-falling without anybody to catch them. The writer felt like a nuisance for asking people for help or advice or simply needing someone to vent to. The writer felt like a burden on society. (oh, I can tell you plenty about that one!)
Unfortunately, free-falling is too apt a metaphor.
That’s what it felt like when I first knew I had to leave Oklahoma. And nobody understood that, much less lent a helping hand to me, grasping the ledge wondering whether to let go.
The author expressed wanting to give up, because maybe “beggars can’t be choosers”.  Now, I’m not sure how you take that line, but this letter is here to clarify my half-wandering, half-seeking attitude which may confuse the average blog reader.
It’s okay to feel lost.
It’s okay to admit you’re lost and need directions.
Take a moment. Give yourself a limit of 60 seconds to feel sorry for yourself, to feel the hugeness of it, to comprehend the “impossible-ness” of the task ahead, then start walking. Even if you don’t know where you’re going quite yet. Better than standing still. And hey, if you do find your way out, to a familiar landmark of some place you once passed, stop and remember–relish– the overwhelming fact that you just proved the “impossible” wrong and somehow found a way.

Repeat daily.
This is my true adventure.

Crossing the bayou with Chaz in a boat we "borrowed". We were headed for the levee, driving, and literally came to a halt. Google maps didn't show anything about a friggin river being there! But--we found a way.

Crossing the bayou with Chaz in a boat we “borrowed”. We were headed for the levee, driving, and literally came to a halt. Google maps didn’t show anything about a friggin river being there! But–we found a way.

The letter is as follows.

Just remember ______, it’s not always rainbows and sunshine for me either.
I’ve gone through some shit that makes me question what the hell I’m doing, which is good to a degree.
Yes, I post some of the highlights of my trip, (Who wouldn’t?) but that’s because it’s not worth framing the bad ones to remember. At least not to dwell on.

I’ve faced extreme difficulty. I just haven’t shared that with people yet.
There will be good days and bad days. Look for the little moments, even if only one, to appreciate the day.
Remember also not to get bummed out because you can’t change people. That’s not your battle to fight entirely. Only in the sense that you can only change yourself and be that illumination, that guiding light to others. The rest is out of your control.

Remit control of others, but take hold of it yourself. A binary philosophy easier quoted than done, I know, but a challenge worth accepting and a lesson worth learning every single day.
I say this from experience, preaching to the choir.

You are not a nuisance. Don’t ever believe that. And don’t surround yourself with people who make you feel that way.

And it’s okay to “leech off others’ passion”. [as quoted in my last blog]
I can only point out in my life and say that I’m glad I turned the page from that chapter at a critical point.
But you WILL have times where it IS indeed necessary to do that. You need people to support you, inspire you, lift you up.
We need those times to be reminded that we CANT do it all ourselves, all the time.

You will go through periods of absorbing and overflowing, neither inferior to the other. Just know the time and place for them, recognize it, and accept it.

Like a sabbath, we need some days off to re-fuel ourselves so we can be of any use to society and others.

Today is my day, all day long, to re-fuel the flame, to fill the cup back up. Some people prefer a do-nothing sabbath. Eh, everybody is different my friend. My sabbaths are always, inevitably, inspiration-seeking days. I need this more than the physical off-day most times, no matter how exhausted I may be from my work week. For example, I look up photographers that are wayyy better than me, authors that write far more eloquently than I feel I ever could, make annotations on movies with life-applying story-lines, jot down funny or poetic or metaphoric news articles, look at art, take a bike ride, find people with amazing non-profits, catch up on chores, write friends letters etc. [Oh, and laugh with friends. Lots. Block off a whole evening.]

No beggars can’t be choosers.
But they can learn how to ride the rails,
thus changing their title to “vagabond,” instead of “bum”. Quite the difference I’ve found, on the road. Entirely different communities, here on the “fringe”. Yes subcultures within (or without) society. The point is, one lets the circumstances weigh him down [literally, to one place], the other uses them for a purpose, even if he knows not what it is half the time.

I’m sorry I can’t change the things which weigh heavy on you right now. I scarcely have the words to write this. But I can say that you are not alone. And it gets better. It does. Just know when to be patient and know when to leave it behind. There is a season for everything. (next blog will elaborate more.)

Until then,
David in the Carolinas.

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