Swimming Through Troubled Waters

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I adore Gospel music. I am not religious, but I truly love listening to people sing beautifully about something or someone that is greater than themselves. One song, in particular, inspires me every time I hear it. It goes, “We fall down, but we get up. We fall down, but we get up. We fall down, but we get up, oh yah, for a saint is just a sinner who fell down, and got up!”

The song goes on, of course, but if you don’t know it, you get the point. It is my motivation for today’s article. Falling down, getting up and swimming through.

Falling down always hurts. Like, always. Sometimes it causes us physical pain. Sometimes it causes us emotional, spiritual or financial pain…but, it always hurts.

But, what comes next? I mean, we have all seen troubled waters. We all know what it looks like when things are not going well or are going poorly. Most of us know it all too well. But, sometimes, in my experiences, I forget that when the water is troubled, that clear, untroubled water is certainly on the horizon. So, I asked my father, who, from time to time, is quite wise (ha ha…just kidding, dad) how we can remember to know that clear waters exists just past the troubled waters. And, this is what he told me…

“There is nothing in this world that I can tell you to make you know that clear waters exist beyond troubled waters. Nothing at all. What I can do, is show you while I am in the troubled waters, I have to hold the belief somewhere in my heart so that you can see it, too. Sometimes, the belief is small, so small I am not even sure that it is there. But, if I am wise, and I want to teach others, I must hold onto the tiny belief that clear, calm waters exist even when I am drowning. Now, stop bothering me; I’m painting.”

He is a clever man, my father, impatient, but clever.

So, here’s my take away from this conversation. I have to hold on to evidence that everything is going to be ok because I know in my heart that it is true. If you happen to be a spouse, a parent, an entrepreneur, a professional, or a HUMAN, you know that things always have a way of working out. I don’t know how to entirely share that idea with others when it seems like they are drowning, other than to live it myself.

I went to ask Poppa one more question before he sent me out of his room, but before I could, he said, “the thing is, troubled waters are also on the horizon of clear waters. Life is a cycle. Things go ‘wrong’, and they go ‘right’. But, at the end of it all, we still have to exist and love ourselves through it. So, learn to swim, no matter what the water is like. And, make the choice to enjoy it….now get out, child.”

Ha! I’ll take it. And, I will fall down, but I will get up. I am learning to swim.

Which strokes pull you through?


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