“You’ve got to know when to hold ’em
Know when to fold ’em
Know when to walk away
And know when to run
You never count your money
When you’re sittin’ at the table
There’ll be time enough for countin’
When the dealin’s done”
– Songwritter Don Schlitz
I’ve loved this song since – well – probably since it was released in 1978 (I was 4, my dad LOVED, and still loves, country music). I’m not a big country fan; more often than not it grates on my nerves so much that I want to punch something, but I digress…
There’s so much truth in this song.
“Every gambler knows
That the secret to survivin’
Is knowin’ what to throw away
And knowin’ what to keep
‘Cause every hand’s a winner
And every hand’s a loser
And the best that you can hope for is to die
in your sleep.”
I see this as a metaphor for how you react to life’s bumps and bruises, joys and hopes. You can sit down with what you’ve been dealt and cry your eyes out, or you can sit with it and think of how fortunate you are. Life can be shit. I know life can be shit. Hard to see the good when it feels as though you’re being engulfed in a flood of depression, self-loathing, tragedy, and loss.
My depression has been engulfing me. I was going to say lately, but let’s be real – it’s been way longer than just lately. I’ve put weight back on, I’ve had so much stress that my skin itches, I’ve migraines almost on the daily, and I can barely sleep. But you know what – I STILL have hope. I still have the light in my sights so that I can have that winner hand.
I’ll not let the hands I’m given weigh me down. Sometimes they do, not going to lie. Getting back up, walking with my head held high, I’m climbing up that mountain – weight on my back, and I’m going to reach that top and over to greener pastures.
I do a lot of soul searching. I have a lot of self-doubt. In the end, I know that I am the one responsible for my internal peace and happiness. I can’t change the shit that goes on around me. I can’t stop asshole teenagers from beating up my son (yes, happened last week), I can’t stop my children growing. I can’t turn back the clock. I can’t wave a wand and my anxiety leave me forever or my depression for that matter. I CAN work my ass off to make life the best I can.
I want to THRIVE not just survive. I plan on making sure my hand’s a good one, and I’ll lay all bets that I’m going to thrive.
Kenny Rogers – The Gambler