When You Are Pushed Down, Push Back

A Push and a Shove

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Self-Care Tip #185 – When you are pushed down, deliberately push back with The Force in  you.  Be a friend to yourself.

So much in life pushes down on us.  I am amazed that we push back – considering how awful some of it is.  After 7 years of private practice in psychiatry, I still get caught off guard by some of the particularly horrible stories I am told.  Blinking my own stinging eyes, I look in amazement at the person in front of me.  What I see is this pushing-back Force.

Last week after diagnosing PTSD in Margie, a mother of a murdered son, I could hardly believe that she still chooses life.  She takes care of herself despite.  That’s how amazing she is.  And I’m her psychiatrist!  It’s such an honor.  And thinking about that straining towards life, that thread in us, all of us – I saw that it was the best description of the brilliance and power that is God.  True, sickness can mute our perception of this beautiful thing in us, whether it’s depression or liver disease.  But all of us have seen some of how hard the thrashing against that loss is.

In thinking on this amazing force, this thrashing about, this straining against the push of whatever is set at tipping us over, I named it God in us.  And I thought, for all the time I spend on the stuff pushing me around in bad ways, I’m going to more actively team up with the struggle to live.  I’m going to choose to strain and thrash about and move at that chink of space in the dark room as much as I can.  Hopefully I can be brave too, like that mother of a murdered son, Margie.

I can choose to ally myself, with what I want to live for.  I’m going to partner with that Force that keeps me thrashing against the push and be stronger, like you have readers.

After our post on suicide a couple days ago, many of you responded with your own stories about how you were pushed and pushed back.  Karal said,

Like all difficult experiences we face in life, there is the possibility of growth from the ashes.  It requires strength and a willingness to walk through that fire.  Unfortunately for survivors of suicide (i’m referring to those left behind) we’re often chastised into feeling that our grieving, our walking through the fire is both wrong, and  unnecessary.  I totally disagree.  Like you said, caring for people is a choice, and being a friend to yourself means making sense of, or at least peace with, what may never make sense.

Karal is allying herself with that Force to make as much sense of what will always be jumbled.  I’m not going to quote all the rest of the brilliant comments.  Please read them.  They were amazing demonstrations of pushing back in a collaborative way with The Force that makes their lives worth living.  This is active in us at times, and not deliberate at others.  Being better to ourselves, we could more deliberately choose when given the push.  We are not thrashing alone.  Push back.

Question:  How do you deliberately choose your alliances in your life for working against what pushed you down?  How do you define that Force in you that pushes back?  Please tell me your story.

8 thoughts on “When You Are Pushed Down, Push Back

  1. If I am still alive, and want to stay that way, after going through what pushed me down, I HAVE to push back. I don’t have a choice. And so I push.
    I push to “make sense of what doesn’t make sense”; I push to keep myself from going under again; I push because I love my family; I push because God has gotten me through for this long and I am grateful. I grab at things – like this blog – that seem to promise help or answers or support or hope and I hang on…and get involved…because I need help and answers and support and hope. I do that with opportunities that come up at church – classes, workshops, etc. – or things that my doctors suggest, or things that friends have found.

    For too many years I hid at home seeing only my family and my doctors and therapists. Then my granddaughter came along and hiding wasn’t an option anymore. She made me feel alive and she made me feel that I had to do and be more than I was. She doesn’t know how hard I push and thrash and kick. She does know that I love her for being who she is in my life. She’s nine now. She wouldn’t understand what or why I push. I’d like to hope she’ll never know. So I keep pushing.

    When I learned about this blog, I thought that it was interesting. I was, at first, uncomfortable about responding. Now I’ve made it part of my daily healing, and it’s hard work…surprisingly hard work! But, it’s the new “push” in my life and I really do thank God for it!

  2. Hi! Just wanted to stop by and say thank you for dropping by my blog earlier. It was very nice meeting you.

    Wonderful blog you have here!

    “Margie, a mother of a murdered son, I could hardly believe she still chose life. She is taking care of herself despite. That’s how amazing she was. ”

    Amazing! What an inspiration this woman is. I can’t even imagine what she must have gone through, yet she still chose life.

    I think for me, when things in life push me down it’s not that I push back, but rather surrender myself to my personal spiritual beliefs, which allow me to see the situation in different light; teaching what I need to learn about myself. I’ve had some hard knocks in my life, yet oddly enough they have been my greatest teachers.

    Great post topic!

    Have a wonderful weekend!

  3. Thanks for sharing this. I often wonder how professional counsellors deal with particularly emotional events related to patients

    I suppose you also push back, just like you would advise us here.
    I agree, I would rather “partner” with that force than even contemplate giving up.

    • “I suppose you also push back, just like you would advise us here.
      I agree, I would rather “partner” with that force than even contemplate giving up.”

      resonated w me! insightful. really glad u commented. thx TLR. keep on.

  4. i was rejected the other night so there was a probelm well i could just stand and die or i could fight for what i believe and i did fight back with mighty strenth i was told i dont care now that i can argue and i won the argument last year my head went to mush the last 7 mounth now i have looked after myslef and to help conroll a lot of it i distract my head away and loo after myslef i found the probelm i dont talk enuff no more to her so she does not feel cared for so i have put a couple of hours aside for her everynight ontop of my massive workload then i was told at school i my family was poor and i would never get into uni i pushed back i am in uni i was told when i was 23 i would not see 24 i pushed back i am 29 now i have a duty of care to myslef befire any one else appart form when i get married its not been selfish and self centred its helping yourself i do but trip up but i push back and eatch time i do this i become stronger inside

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