Today is going to be a good day.
That’s what I have to keep telling myself each day when I feel myself starting to slip into The Bad Place. The Bad Place, the place I vowed never to go back to after moving past The Bad Place years ago. I first went to The Bad Place when I found out my grandmother had colon cancer right before I began my junior year of high school. I should probably mention that I found out about my grandmother’s diagnosis on my sixteenth birthday. See, my aunt came to drop off my birthday present from my grandmother, a simple yet elegant gold band, and after a lull in the typical birthday-day questions, she just blurted it out: “Nana has cancer.” My parents had agreed to tell me after school started, to make sure I had adjusted to junior year before finding out the news, but the news came to me in the form of a true birthday surprise.
I spent my junior year in The Bad Place, a state of numbness from the world, not caring that much because my grandmother, the woman who was such a significant part of my life, had cancer and was dying. At times, I would visualize The Bad Place. Dark, dimly lit woods, and a path surrounded by barren trees on all sides. Ahead, a light. Although bright, it is so far, and no matter how far I walk, it remains ever distant. Other times, I would imagine myself caught in the ocean, clinging to a narrow rock while a storm churns the water, blasting me with heavy waves, winds, and rain.
Now, I cling to the good days. I treasure the moments that take my mind away from The News, that reaffirm that it will get better, that God is protecting my family and will care for us, and when I don’t feel like I’m moving towards The Bad Place. Because I can’t go back to The Bad Place. I need to remain in The Good Place for my family, so that I can continue to remain strong for them, no matter how downtrodden I may feel on the inside. I have people depending on me; and so, if I won’t remain in The Good Place for me, I will do it for them.
Thankfully, over the years I have grown to love The Good Place as my place of choice. And so, I will continue to fight for the good days.