| Anne Williamson | 

It’s 5:00a, and I can’t sleep. I am listening to Daniel Goleman talk to Oprah about his ground-breaking work on emotional intelligence. I remember when his initial book on the subject came out. It was 1995; I was 14 years old and struggling beneath an eating disorder and depression. His book was a life line for me: for the first time, I glimpsed a future where my deep emotions and thoughts might not be weights on my life, but propellers toward success, or what I now call wholeness. Goleman’s work cracked open my current paradigm. Thank g/God.

In any particular moment in time, it is easy to believe nothing will ever shift our perspective so dramatically....

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It's been two months since I last alluded to depression in this blog, and five months before that I spoke about it for the first time. So, honestly, I was due - depression may stay away now for longer stretches but it's hell-bent on staying in touch. I hesitate admitting this. Doing so still delivers pricks of shame, though the needles have shrunk. I'm also not sure I'm ready to admit depression as a theme in my writing - too honest, too cliche. Of course, it makes sense: our lessons, our wisdom loves to lie in the shadow side of our personality.

This week was no different. As I pushed against depression's weight, I found myself wondering about hope versus useless desire. When do we name wanting to change a personality trait, a situation, a relationship, as one or the other? And, therefore, keep trying or begin to let go, accept? 

The answer is rarely simple. It depends on a myriad of factors, uneasy answers to complicated questions: Which is kind? To who? Which is safe? Brave? Sane? Am I self-aware enough to know the difference? How long have I been trying? How long is too long? How set is she in her ways? How set am I? Is my hope enabling him? Is this institution, this dynamic, dysfunctional beyond repair? Perhaps only if I stay? Or, go? Maybe it's just not my fight? Which is loving? Which, if anything, will work?

I think these are good questions, however seldom we know the answers. I also think there may be a better one.

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