Lately this is what I've heard from a lot of my friends, and it made me think about what that phrase means exactly. Am I suppose to keep swimming even when I'm exhausted? How about when the sharks are nipping at my toes? Or when the waters get so rough that I feel like I'm not swimming at all but just being tossed about by the oceans of life? Sure it's easy to swim for a while in calm waters, but even then, eventually, you need a boat, or piece of flotsam...something to hold on to. No one gets through the river of life on their own. We all have people we lean on, talk to, experience life's joys and downfalls with. To tell someone you love to just 'keep swimming'....well that's good advice. It is. But I think it's more important to advise that and amend it with, 'you'll be there waiting for them on the dock when they arrive'. With your hand out in friendship and love, to help in any way you can. Because you know what they say about helping people? You get it back tenfold. It comes back to you when you need it most.
I'm having a difficult time getting my business built up to where I need it to support myself, so I'm looking for a part time job while I keep building my business, and I'm donating plasma to get some quick cash to pay all the people that want me to keep swimming, that I owe money to. They aren't like my friends that want me to keep swimming because they love me. They just want their money yesterday.
In my past I've had the opportunity or luck to be the person on the dock, holding out my hand, and wallet, to help friends, or lovers in need. And I would do it again, then or now, if i could. And one of my friends has opened his wallet to help me. I didn't even have to ask, he just did it. He could afford to, and remembered a time when he couldn't and I was there. I'm so grateful for friends like this. I've had some other offers of meals and such from newer friends. I'm hoping I never have to call in any old markers, but I will if I see that I'm about ready to fall to far behind. And this will be very difficult for me, as I'm not one to ask for help. Even this blog is difficult, but as with all of my blog topics, I figured, "hey, in this economy, there are bound to be others of you out there going through this, and having the same difficulty."
So if you are unemployed or underemployed and you need help, but you can't find the words....or maybe you just have never been in this situation before, you've always been the mom, or dad and helped everyone....swallow that pride, put on your big girl pants, get your big girl glass, invite your family and friends into your problems, like they do you. Be open and honest with the situation, have a plan of attack to make the situation better, and ask your loved ones for help. It will surprise you how many loved ones you have that are willing to lend you money to help you get back on your feet. And it shouldn't matter if your downfall was related to the economy, or bad decisions or even a mistake. We all fall from time to time. We all need a hand up. And most of us would rather have the hand up then the hand out.
So yes. Keep swimming, if the sharks are biting, if the waters are too rough, and if you are too tired. But keep swimming. Don't let life get you to give up and drown, because then there is truly nothing...then it is game over. And while that might sound pleasant, it is nothing....absolutely nothing....something we can't even imagine, because our minds won't let us. The closest thing is sleep without dreaming, which...guess what? you can't remember.
This is the only life we get. This is our only chance to be happy and have the life we want. Make it count. Make the right choices for your happiness, because if you don't you can be sure no one else will.