More than half of 2017 is already over, and as I reflect on my New Year’s goals, I can honestly say that I wasn’t able to stick with any of them. You see, things never turn out the way we plan for them. Almost any milspouse can attest to that little life fact. And though I’ve faced many let downs, failures, obstacles, and trials this year, the one aspect of my life that I haven’t let go is the need to never stop trying.
The healthy eating dinner plan didn’t last, the exercise plan went by the wayside, and saving every penny turned into using every penny for life’s unexpected situations. But it doesn’t end there.
My husband, who is currently on a rotation in South Korea, knows everything I face on a day-to-day basis, often on my own as I struggle as a solo parent. And though words of encouragement only go so far, he tries to urge me to at least try to have a good day.
My response is always, “I never stop trying.”
When I’m bombarded with work as a freelance editor, I never give up and simply push myself harder to complete my work on time.
When I’m asked to babysit the day of, with a full schedule already planned, I don’t give up on someone in need. I put one more car seat in the car and pack an extra bag of snacks.
When my daughter decides she isn’t going to listen to a word I say and starts saying, “No” or, “I can’t,” I don’t give up on my daughter as I remember to take a deep breath before my inner demon comes out and, instead, try to talk in a calm voice while remembering that she is only 3.
When my husband’s schedule to come home changes, once again, I don’t give up on the military as I try not to get upset, and I remember that there is nothing he can do about it. I simply readjust my schedule for moving back to the duty station and push forward.
Never stop trying also means never giving up.
But man, would I love to just give up. To say I’m done, I don’t need this in my life any more. To just say no when a need arises, or to give my family a really hard time when they mess up my plans or day.
It’s much easier to just give up, to fall into the feelings of selfishness or irrational justification. I can think of a million reasons why I should just give up. Surely I would feel better without all this chaos in my life.
But you see, no matter what we are dealing with, experiencing, or going through right now, even if the Almighty were to take it out of our lives, there would be something else to replace it. That is just how life works. There will always be something to overcome.
So I just keep trying, every single day. And though I will never be perfect in all that I do, as long as I just keep trying, then I have not given up.