Adamant Amongst the Ages

The year this story took place was 2014, in Houston, Texas. One fine afternoon my family and I had spent time frequenting the sandy beach and waters, enjoying a mini-vacation, we got to experience all of this with my father- whom was called to that city on behalf of work. Yes, it was quite the treat to be- rather sporadically- taken out of school for a few days, in order to do some light exploring. Although the winds were strong and waters chilly, we savored the ocean view and good company. Unfortunately for my family, the simplicity of the morning would indefinitely be short lived. I, in fact, would not be making this trip an easy one. With only a few days of consideration, tender and unseasoned, fresh into high school, Daisy Gamble would here make the long-term decision of her lifetime, that absolutely no one was expecting.
Don’t get me wrong, it is not as if I ruined our travels completely. I just.. eliminated the ease, to put it lightly. Allow me to steer you in the direction this article is going, though I am not going to yet tell you the choice that was made. Since about, say, seventh grade I began dieting. Now, this diet was not average, and it most definitely had a long list of restrictions that I felt inclined to obey. This is only the peek of my extensive journey, thus far, regarding food. Move along to eighth grade, I fell off the wagon and then some, gaining roughly, fifty pounds from my previous weight. You may not see the relevance to this detail, but this is the exact period in which I completely devoted myself to never allowing my body to reach that state again. I did not care what restrictions were placed, the level of difficulty, or how long I had to keep it up, I could not go back to how things were. So, into freshman year I had lost a majority of the weight I had gained and was only moving forward. This is where the two storylines intersect. I had found a new point of exploration for my health that simultaneously challenged my preconceived moral standards I had- not very mindfully- placed upon myself and held potential for continual weight loss.
Despite snacking- without realizing- on Slim Jims and the ironic location I was in, I made the extremely hasty decision to become…..wait for it….. a vegetarian. If you are anything like me, you are shaking your head as you read this. How could someone decide to completely alter the way they were living and eating at the drop of a hat? For an intensely stubborn personality, it’s apparently fairly easily. Do not think for one second I was going to go back on the commitment I had just preached of to my entire family. So, much like a large portion of the choices in my life, I threw myself face first into the belly of the whale, prepared to take on any and all sacrifices to come. To my parents’ surprise, I held my beliefs dearly for well over two years, against all dissuasion. As a matter of fact, my persuasion was so firm that I became progressively more involved with the practice, over the years. No one- myself excluded- was going to reverse my convictions, under any circumstances.
As I mentioned before, my involvement in the meat-free scene only progressed. At the tail end of 2016- September or October- I fully evolved from vegetarian to vegan and was determined to become the ‘healthiest’ I could be. This, of course, never actually was achieved due to my inability to understand what the concept of “healthy” actually meant, but I suppose that is an explanation for another time. I experimented with all kinds of variations between high-carb, high-fat, no oils, sugar-free, calorie restrictions, etc. Nothing truly satisfied the craving I had buried within myself, though, and I just could not understand why. Why am I not pleased with all of my achievements? Why am I in a constant battle with myself about what is truly morally right and wrong? Why do I still feel so off from a majority of people who choose to be meat-free? It was at that moment things clicked. I needed to let go. I needed escape from the confines I had placed around myself. I needed relief from the constant pressure of maintaining a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle. I needed to leave the mentality that there was only one way to be, without exception, behind. I was so distracted by how I felt I was supposed to be I completely lost sight of the things I needed.
At the end of the day, it was not anyone else who changed my mind about the diet I was so committed to. No, I had to figure that one out on my own. Of course that never stopped people from trying to convince me otherwise. But as we all know, the attempted persuasions of others only seemed to push my defiant nature into fighting back all the stronger. Even though, in a way, the situation that played out kind of emotionally scarred me, I wouldn’t take back one minute fraction of a second of that brutal time period. Would you like to know why? If I did not go through this exact order of events, I would never truly believe and understand that no matter how great the triumph or long-lasting the appearance, it cannot satisfy your soul. It cannot satiate that aching part of your heart that never seems to be reachable. For some of you, that may be a hard thing to accept, Lord knows it was for me. We constantly have this idea of “If I only had…..” I would be happier. I would be more content, just like everyone else around me seems to be, so easily. I’m sorry. I am really, truly sorry. That is the biggest lie any of us can tell ourselves. Maybe, just maybe for a short while, a good thing will please us. It will make us soar higher into the realm of contentedness than we had ever even dared to reach for before. But it is temporary. Once those butterflies and/or pride of accomplishment wear off, we are left right where we started. We are struggling with that same core issue that has been taunting us for ages. 
You might wonder what you do about that seemingly unfillable gap. Frankly, some days I wonder that same exact thing. But, from what I have learned to be the most effective and encourage highly is hope. Hope in the future, hope in adaptation, hope in better things to come, hope that things will be okay, even if they are the exact opposite right now. For me, it is a step beyond that, even. It is an all connected form of hope. I have faith. Faith in a God that promises to deliver us from the pains that life accumulates. Faith that even in the darkest of times, He will be, without a doubt, by my side. Faith that this is all temporary. Faith, because hope isn’t good enough for me. Faith, because I honestly have no idea what I would have hope in without Him. I need an almighty God that is greater than all things, in order for my hope to go on. And that is exactly what I have. That might not be your thing, I am not saying it has to be, but hope, hope, regardless of where derived from, is crucial. Even if you have sworn for weeks on end, that your hope has vanquished and you just want a way out, it is still there. Even throughout that desperate and agonizing longing for greater things, I know you have felt, it is still there. Every breath, every step, every thought is hope. It is hope because you have not given up. You may believe- more than anything- that you have, but you are still here. That is a testimony of hope, in itself! We all have it, it is just a matter of finding it. Dig it out from that cluttered mess in the corner and dust off those cobwebs that have been gathering for years. I know the feeling of having a desire for things that simply are not there. I know the feeling of emptiness and of being completely lost in a world that advertises ‘identity’ on every corner. But, please, believe me when I say that hope is never lost, no matter how much we feel we, ourselves, have been. Take hope my friends, take hope.

How do you feel about my encouragement of hope? Do you have anything to add to my point? What is a phase in your life you went through expecting fulfillment? Are you still in that “phase”? Tell me below, I would be delighted to hear from any of you, even if it is just a brief comment! Adue until next time!


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