Hope & Reality: A Blog Relay

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Gabby at The Veggie Nook posted this, sharing (among other things) her thoughts on the topic of hope as part of a Blog Relay – which looks as if it all started back here at Melanie Crutchfield’s blog.  (Always interesting to learn what pops into people’s minds as they are either savoring or suffering their daily runs.)  I’m honored that Gabby included me in her list of bloggers invited to join the relay.  Then Kristy at Keepin’ it Kind jumped into it with her thoughtful post (and yummy recipe) and also tagged me to share my thoughts.  Thank you, ladies!  I have to admit to having flashbacks to hastily-penned and awkward high school essays on this one, but the power and mystery of hope has been a major player in my personal drama over the past two years, so I decided to sharpen my No. 2 pencil and add my post to the relay.

Hope and reality.  Two words not often paired together, though they should be.  Without a good dose of sober reality, hope is a pretty bag with a hole at the bottom, a remote without batteries, a car with its tank on E.    Without information and planning, dedication and sometimes sheer muscle, hope is a merely a dream into which one surrenders their future to the vagaries of chance.  If you are like me, you do your best to plan for every contingency.  There is comfort in imagining possible scenarios – no matter how ugly those scenarios might look – and planning accordingly.  It’s why I almost always bring food with me when I’ll be away from my house; why I make lists and why I find strength and solace in redundancy: save it in a computer file, but better have a hard copy on paper tucked away as well.

Hope’s role is that it fuels reality.  Hope is reality’s muse – and no revelation here – it is what gets one to face what’s coming; it’s what gets one through challenging circumstances.  That somehow, somewhere along the line, circumstances will improve.  Reality tempers; hope inspires.  What surprises me is hope’s persistence.  (I know, I know “hope springs eternal.”  But what about “all hope is lost?”)  Hope can be quite determined and persistant.  It inserts itself into one’s affairs, offers advice, gives a kick to one’s backside.  It can sidle up slyly or appear with the force of a freight train.  I’ve had the unsettling sensation of feeling low with sadness and loss and then suddenly, right into the middle of all of that heaviness comes a light sensation, a feeling of happiness that appears without provocation or request.  It’s disconcerting and makes me feel a little guilty.  Yet I never want that feeling to go away.  A powerful team, hope and reality.

Hope for the best; prepare for the worst.

I’m going to shirk my relay responsibilities here and just open it up to any blogger who wishes to tackle this topic and add their voice and point of view.  All of the posts I’ve read so far offer a different, interesting angle and I’m sure there is a bottomless well of thoughts on the topic.  Please, relay on.

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  1. What a neat co-incidence – reading this post so describes my current thinking, and it’s been comforting indeed to do so. I’m certainly hoping for the best – but the worst, so far, has already happened, and I’m trying to get over it – and am doing so, thanks to help and support from my wonderful family and the friends about me. Long may it continue – and my prayers to all those who are still battling.

  2. […] of things to pack for my Tough Mudder adventure this weekend, when I came across Annie’s Hope & Reality post over at An Unrefined […]

  3. That is a beautiful idea to spread such a thoughtful and profound post :D

    Choc Chip Uru

  4. What lovely thoughts! I love your perspective, especially the idea that it fuels our present moment- because what are we moving towards if not to something better?

  5. I think you’ve put your finger on the nub of the thing Annie, hope won’t take you to where you go without a good dose of reality. I love your image of hope without reality being a pretty bag with a hole in it, that’s a great way of putting it. The athlete with Olympic dreams isn’t going to compete for their country on hopes alone, hope is only half the story, as you say. I like that last motto, “hope for the best, prepare for the worst”, I think it’s eminently sensible and realistic and from what I’ve learned of you since this blogging adventure began, it seems very well matched to your character. It’s well grounded, secure in itself and positive about the present and the future, just like you and your blog. Thanks for this post, I’ll be re-reading it in due course.

    • I appreciate the kind words, Lorna. I struggled with this – you know how sometimes the idea/thoughts are clear in your mind, but difficult to articulate? Another saying I love which is kinda sorta related is, Trust but Verify :-).

      • I know what you mean but I thought you articulated it very well, it was quite obvious that you’d thought about it before writing it. That’s another great saying, Trust but Verify! :-)

  6. Barb says:

    This is such a great idea, and as always you’re wonderfully eloquent!

  7. Kristy says:

    As always, your writing is so eloquent and thought-provoking. Your words are ringing so true in regards to where my mind is currently. Thank you for the great reminder that I need to work to make those day dreams a reality. :-)

  8. Richgail Enriquez says:

    I wholeheartedly agree. Thought without action is not enough. We need a good balance of both. Thanks for this “food” for thought :)

  9. Somer says:

    I love your twist on this. Real and solid, like you ;)

  10. Lou Dwan says:

    Ah, bless. I really enjoy your perspective, Annie…. I felt like I was back at high school when writing my piece on this too… shudder, shudder ;)

  11. bar says:

    Ahh, you are beautiful!

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