imyeyes-banner-sqIn My EyesBy Edward B. Antonio

Facing life’s challenges

In My Eyes: by Edward B. Antonio


“For good times and bad times, I’ll be on your side forevermore…”


There goes a song for two people who would help each other at all times, no matter what the cost is, fellas.


But often, we find ourselves in the thick of turmoil, almost at the point of breaking up. There are times when challenges come so big that they seem to be insurmountable. People who are pushed to the edge may commit suicide or do something out of rage, only to regret at the end.


One such story ended up one dead and the other in jail for a lifetime imprisonment — for murder.

Renz was an upcoming fire officer, young, good-looking and ambitious. His pretty fiancée, Joyce, worked as an accounting officer in a big cooperative establishment. Their relationship had been going on for years, but one day, Joyce told Renz she was breaking off the relationship. Renz discovered that Joyce had found another man more favored by her family.


The outraged fireman tried to win her back, but in vain. He could not accept the fact that those five years would end up to nothing. He stormed Joyce’s workplace, found her doing paper works on her desk and tried to win her back. The woman refused and then six gunshots were heard. Joyce died on the spot; Renz surrendered to the police.


Another story tells of a man whose wife loved her brothers and sisters more than her own family. She spent for them, gave them favors, even borrowed money for them at her own expense.


One day, one of her brothers met an accident. She gave all her husband’s savings (she held and kept the family’s finances) to him for his hospital bills, medicines and doctors’ fees. She incurred debts for him. When her husband discovered the matter, he nearly went berserk, but he kept his cool, saying all those things were just trials in life. Today, he is working hard to change his wife’s view of their family and to bounce back from the financial debacle caused by his wife.


There are many stories of struggles in life, fellas. Nearly all people we meet while walking down the streets are fighting a hard battle in their lives.


In order to cope up with these downs in life, I have listed here some fundamental truths to keep you and me on our feet amidst all difficulties:


  1. Pain is part of life and love, and it helps you grow.


So many of us are afraid of ourselves, of our own truth, and our feelings most of all.  We talk about how great the concepts of life and love are, but then we hide from both every day.  We hide from our truest feelings.  Because the truth is life and love hurt sometimes, and the feelings this brings disturbs us.


We are taught at an early age that all pain is evil and harmful.  Yet, how can weever deal with real life and true love if we’re afraid to feel what we really feel?  We need to feel pain, just as we need to feel alive and loved.  Pain is meant to wake us up.  Yet we try to hide our pain.  Realize this.  Pain is something to carry willingly, just like good sense.  Because you can only learn how strong you are when being strong is the only choice you have.


It’s all in how you carry the things that don’t go your way.  That’s what matters in the end.  Pain is a feeling.  Your feelings are a part of you – your own reality.  If you feel ashamed of them, and hide them, you’re letting the lies of insecurity destroy your reality.  You should stand up for your right to feel pain – to endure it – to own your scars – to deal with the realities of life and love, as you grow into the strongest, wisest, truest version of yourself.


  1. Mindset is half the battle.



It’s okay to have down days and tough times.  Expecting life to be wonderful all the time is wanting to swim in an ocean in which waves only rise up and never come crashing down.  However, when you recognize that the rising and crashing waves are part of the exact same ocean, you are able to let go and be at peace with the reality of these ups and downs.  It becomes clear that life’s ups require life’s downs.


In other words, life isn’t perfect, but it sure is good.  Our goal shouldn’t be to create a perfect life, but to live an imperfect life in radical amazement.  To get up every morning and take a good look around in a way that takes nothing for granted.  Everything is extraordinary.  Every day is a gift.  Never treat life casually.  To be spiritual in any way is to be amazed in every way.


Do not let the pain of a situation make you hopeless.  Do not let negativity wear off on you.  Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness.  Even though others may disagree with you, take pride in the fact that you still know the world to be a beautiful place.  Change your thoughts and you change your reality.


And mindset is especially powerful when it comes to accepting that…


  1. Your biggest fears don’t really exist.


When times are hard it can be difficult to follow your heart and take another step, but it’s a tragedy to let the lies of fear stop you.  Although fear can feel overwhelming, and defeats more people than any other force in the world, it’s not as powerful as it seems.  Fear is only as deep as your mind allows.  You are still in control.  So take control!



The key is to acknowledge your fear and directly address it.  Fight hard to shine the light of your words upon it.  Because if you don’t, if your fear becomes a wordless, obscure darkness that you avoid, and perhaps even manage to briefly forget, you open yourself to future attacks from fear when you least expect it.  You CAN beat fear if you face it.  Be courageous!  And remember that courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid; courage means you don’t let fear stop you from moving forward with your life.


  1. You are growing through experience.



Over time you will find that life isn’t necessarily any easier or harder than you thought it was going to be; it’s just that the easy and the hard aren’t exactly the way you had anticipated, and don’t always occur when you expect them to.  This isn’t a bad thing; it makes life interesting.  With a positive attitude you will always be pleasantly surprised.


When you stop expecting things to be a certain way, you can appreciate them for what they are.  Ultimately you will realize that life’s greatest gifts are rarely wrapped the way you expected.


Experience is what you get when your plans don’t go as planned, and experience is the most valuable commodity you own – it builds your strength.


You have the power to turn your wounds and worries into wisdom; you just have to do something about them.  You have to accept what has happened and use what you’ve learned to step forward.  Everything you’ve experienced has given you the upper hand for dealing with everything you have yet to experience.  Realize this and set yourself free.


(More next week)