“In a dark moment I ask, ‘How can anyone bring a child into this world?’ And the answer rings clear, ‘Because there is no other world, and because the child has no other way into it.’” ~Robert Brault
I’ve had my share of dark moments lately, and inevitably I wonder: “How could I have brought Adeline into a world full of so much pain and suffering? What is the point?” But then we have a day like yesterday: January 5th and it was 70 degrees in Denver. We went to the park and walked around the pond, watching the ducks and running in the grass and mud. Adeline would hold my hand for a moment, then race off on her own again. As she turned to find me the sun would hit her face and she’d throw her head back, squinting and laughing: pure joy. And that, I realized, is the point. I want that for her.
I want her to feel the wind on her face. To brush her fingers through a cat’s soft fur. To bask in the sun on a warm day. To bite into a strawberry and taste the tangy sweetness. To eat a peach and feel the juice drip down her chin and run along her fingers. To hold a friend’s hand. To stand in awe of the monuments made by man. To climb a mountain. To make love. To hold in her hand a newborn baby’s impossibly small toes. To see the thanks on the face of someone she has helped. To hear music. To dance. To jump into a cold lake on a hot day. To smell cookies baking in the oven. And even to feel pain, because without pain the joy isn’t as sweet.
My old therapist used to tell me that the best way to fight back against depression is to create for yourself a life worth living. Only then will you have the meaning you need to save yourself. The things I want for Adeline are good enough for me, too: there doesn’t need to be a grand plan, striking success, great adventure. I just need the people I love and moments of joy. Isn’t that enough?