A Different Look at Hope

Hope is not always what it seems. It is ambiguous in the sense that there is no central quality that really tells us what it is. What does it mean to have hope? To hold onto it? To lose it? What exactly is this thing, that drives us? Hope can be defined by its abilities—without hope, there would be no eagerly awaited tomorrows, reasons for fixing what has been damaged, and no will to be better or do better. Hope has eyes that we do not, and that can see things that we are incapable of perceiving. It sees what can be rather than what is, but more importantly, tells us that what can be is achievable, and we are not far behind.

Though the idea of hope is so many times based upon what we cannot see, sometimes the strongest form of hope is based upon what we can see. In times of darkness and despair, if we were to base our possibility off of something invisible and intangible to us, then “hope” would not hold its meaning. It would not live up to the expectations that it will provide a light. Though faith in the unseen is imperative in growing as a person and living a forward-looking life, in some circumstances, what we can see is what grounds us.

I think that this way of looking at hope holds the truest when the task of fixing is what lies ahead. When we have nothing left to lose, no more skeletons in the closet, and no more resistance to putting ourselves on the line, we are worn down, without a doubt. There is fight in us, but not aggressive fight. It is rather a stubborn fight. It is stubborn because it has experienced what was and has seen what could be. It is a fight that will stand on the corner of mistake and forgiveness through the pouring rain and through the sunshine, for as long as it takes. This type of fight is called hope. It carries no umbrella and wears no coat, yet holds no grudges against its surroundings. It cries in the rain, weathers the cold of the wind, and smiles in the warmth of the sun, but understands that it is subject to the surroundings—it lives in accordance to the world around it.

Perhaps the fact that hope in whichever form, is not able to be defined, is its most redeeming quality. Hope is broad. It is fight, it is vision, it is stubbornness, and it is love. Sometimes hope does not “happen” because of light, but rather darkness that our eyes become adjusted to, Sometimes, hope lies in the fact that our eyes are able to adjust to the darkness in the first place.

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