Sunday, February 14, 2010


Begin. Continue. End. You do it every day. You start something. You endure it. You end it. How do you decide what to continue though? How do you know what's best for you? Or do you ignore what's best for you and do what's best for other people?

Continue is defined in the dictionary as a verb meaning 1] to go on after suspension or interruption, 2] to go on or keep on, as in some course or action, 3] to last or endure, and 4]to remain in a place; abide; stay.

Continue. It sounds so easy. You start something. For example, a sport. You've played your entire life, and you go to college, on a grant for this particular sport. You're on the team, but you've been benched. You sit on the bench for a whole season. You understand, you were a freshman. You continue to go to practice. You continue to show up, and be a reliable teammate in the hopes that you'll play soon. Season two. Benched. You know you're better than some of the people in the game, but you're still benched. What to do? Quit because things aren't going well for you? You're not playing, but maybe deserve to. Do you continue to endure the shame of being benched game after game? You've put your whole life into this, and now it's judgement day. You have two choices. End or continue. How do you decide?

Okay, lets get a little deeper. Relationship. Love. Been dating for a while now. You love each other, but it's hard (aren't all relationships?) and you don't know if you're happy anymore. Or worse, you don't know if your significant other is happy anymore. You've got memories, you've got mutual friends, family, etc. Ending this relationship will be devastating to you, to your significant other. But there's a chance that if you stuck together, continue your relationship, that things can get better. Hold on or let go? Do you give up on each other, call it quits and work on being alone? Do you stick together and have faith, have trust that you can fix it, work through the problems? Let's escalate it a little bit. Now this isn't just a relationship, this is a marriage. This is house, kids, pets, the whole deal. This is more than just a few months of being with someone. This is years. This is life. It gets more complicated, eh?

How do you make choices like that? Do you do what's best for you? What's best for them? How do you decide? Lists of pros and cons? Talking? Being alone and just making a sole decision. Me? Believing in the best is something I struggle with. Right now? I can't decide what to continue, what to end. I'm scared that if I let go, I'm letting go forever, and I will never be able to get back what I have. If it were up to me, I would suffer through the misery of fighting and work on being together. I feel like giving up all the memories, the company, the love... none of it is worth it. None of those wonderful things are worth giving up for some hard times.

Back to the sports team. I have a friend. Okay, I have two friends. And both of them are in that situation. One of the friends quit the team. The other one hasn't. The one who hasn't says, "I've put too much into this to give up now." The one that did said that he loved it, but it just didn't matter as much to him. I doubt it was an easy decision for him to make, but in the end he did, and I would believe that he's happier now than he was when he was benched on the sidelines.

How do you decide to continue? Continue ever single day? What if you're at the very bottom, looking up, wondering how you'll ever get up there again? What if it looks so hopeless, that you don't know what to do? You don't know whether or not to keep breathing let alone keep doing the things you've been doing all along... Every thing's gone wrong, and when you look at it from a different perspective? You did it to yourself. How do you live with yourself? Here, 'Continuing' gets pretty tricky. If you stop 'continuing', you've decided to stop living. This decision doesn't affect just you now. Now this affects your parents, sister, brother, friends. It gets to people who see you on the bus everyday. That lady at the bookstore who smiles at you when you come in every week. It's the friend that you sit next to in class. How do you decide to take yourself away from them? And if you do decide to do so... how do you know that things weren't going to get better? What if you kill yourself, and the next day you were going to sit in class and something would happen that would have changed everything?

Start. Continue.



DanielMelville said...

so theres negative affects of not continuing, are there also negative affects of continuing if that is the wrong choice?

Like the friend that quit the sports team and seems happier now... He gave it 2 seasons and saw no evidence of change to come so he quit right? what if he stayed and nothing ever got better?

WordMonger said...

I would agree. There are negative effects of contining if it's the wrong choice. But how can you know if it's the wrong choice unless it's never given the change to start? How is anything the wrong choice if you made it? How is anything the right choice?

As for the sports friend, he is happier now. The team wasn't his true passion, and staying on the team was interfering with what he really wanted to focus on. If he had stayed, and things never got better, then thats the coaches fault for not realizing his players true potential. However, I would muse that things probably could have gotten better, the team in question has gone down in standards and I'm confident that if he was to try out again, he would succeed and probably be one of the better players on the team... after he practiced a little bit...