After a particularly stressful week, Glenn Dunlea uses his editorial to give a bit of advice.
Life can be tough.
We have all experienced it in different ways. Sometimes, for whatever reason, something gets you down. And then once you’re down, other things just keep pushing you further and further into yourself, until it just feels like you’re trapped with no escape.
I didn’t have the greatest of weeks last week. It began well: I managed to get a 3,000 word essay finished over the weekend and was fairly happy with what I felt was a very solid piece of work. Then when I went to print it on Monday, it was gone.
There was no trace of it. Nothing. All of that work, hours spent pouring over books and essays and journals trying to find just the right thing to fight around my eloquently chosen academic jargon: gone. Throughout the week I managed to reassemble bits of it to come up with something that matched the word count, but it wasn’t the same. I had been absolutely on top of my game, and all it took was for me to realise that all of the work I had put into the original was for nothing.
Things didn’t get much better from there, but to go into detail would be to cast an absolute pall over what will hopefully be a fantastic week ahead. I am aware that what may have been absolutely catastrophic in my life this week would hardly stand up to some of the issues others are dealing with, but we all face things in our lives that put a wall in front of us, and it is up to each of us as individuals to deconstruct these walls in whatever way we can. I don’t know yet why this week will be fantastic, or if it will even be any better than last week, but the only thing anyone can do is to look up, look forward, and move on.
And at this point, I would like to introduce a woman that has brought me immense joy over the past couple of days. When I was down, I would turn to her, and she would never fail to lift my spirits. Some of you may already know her, but for those of you that don’t, please meet Anne Sheerin.
I’m not joking about this: this video saved me this week. This woman’s reaction to the arrival of Daniel O’Donnell and his wife Majella to her B&B is one that I have watched more times than is humanly decent at this stage.
But Anne’s joy is genuine. It may seem simple to some people, a tad excessive maybe, but there are things in all of our lives that would allow us to react in the same way were we ever presented with them. And that’s what I held onto during last week, and hold onto every day.
There are things out there that we never get to see. We may never get to meet our heroes and icons like Anne did, we may never fully achieve what we set out to do, but it is the bigger picture, the light at the end of the tunnel, the goal that we work towards that keeps us going.
Try not to forget what makes you happy. Make sure that you make time to experience it as often as you can. Whether it’s a certain song, or a film, or a book, or a loved one, or a place or an animal, or a tree: remember it! Don’t forget about it! Allow whatever it is about that thing that makes you as happy as Anne fill you with joy.
And hold onto that feeling, because you never know when you might need it.