Giving Up

I’ve never thought of myself as one to give up. Sure, I may not always have the best method for dealing with a situation, but I sure as hell am a fighter. I was that child who on trips with school and guides would get half way up the leap of faith pole, burst into tears, and get stuck there. Encouragement from those around me would always push me a little higher, and I’d just become more and more afraid. I’m sure I annoyed all the other kids. I’d be up there for ages. I wouldn’t come down because that would mean failure. I still never actually made it to the top and completed the leap of faith, but I am a strong believer that everything that I have achieved comes from perseverance and hard work.

I’ve always found it difficult to understand how others can give up so easily. At school I’m surrounded by so many people who don’t try at school. The ones who bunk, who don’t do their homework, who leave school with no GCSEs. Even worse, those who are naturally clever but put no effort into their education. There are some people who’d feel sorry for them. I don’t. Everybody at my school has had the same educational chances as I have. Of course, I know nothing of their home lives and their families, but I’m not sure that’s all that important. If you’re a fighter, you’ll achieve where ever you are.

Giving up on yourself is sometimes just the easy way out. For those who struggle to cope, they see it as their only option. I know what it’s like to get into a narrow mindset – it can often be difficult to see anything outside of your tunnel. Giving up on yourself doesn’t usually affect anybody as much as it affects you, and so we don’t really have a right to judge you. What really troubles me however, is those that give up on others. Most of all, those that give up on their closest friends, and their family.

I was talking to someone earlier about my best friend. For those of you that don’t know, my best friend has an undiagnosed eating disorder. Catch her on the right day, she’ll agree with you but say she doesn’t want help before heading out for a five mile run. Catch her on the wrong day and you’ll experience a torrent of anger because she was half a pound heavier the fourth time she weighed herself that day than on the third trip to the scales. A different day, she might be fine. The next, she’s buying her own personal set of scales and telling you that she takes laxatives occasionally. She’s calculating her BMI, you forgot to ask what she had for tea last night, and you suddenly realise that she hasn’t eaten for three days. It’s an addiction, a form of control, and she sees it as a way to achieve. She hates failure. The person that I was talking to is another friend of mine. She’s noticed that often after talking to my best friend, I struggle to concentrate and revise. She’s said that I ‘go mardy’ and am a complete idiot. The friend doesn’t know the severity and the details of the situation, but she has an awareness from what she has seen and heard. This person told me to give up. If my best friend doesn’t want help, that’s her own problem. She’ll get sick, she won’t be a doctor, and she’ll learn the hard way.

Don’t you see? I can’t give up on her now – she needs me more than ever. I know that there is nothing I can do right now, but being here for her is what counts. If someone is really a friend to you, you love them unconditionally. And for me, unconditionally means that I will continue to be here for her even if it is to the detriment of my own health. Even for those times when she doesn’t want me here.

I don’t make friends to look good. I don’t judge my friends on appearance, their reputation, or their popularity. I don’t choose my friends based on their interests. To me, a friend is someone you can rely on. Nobody is perfect, and people will let you down, but a friend has to be someone who you trust. A friend should give you a shoulder to cry on, and they should hug you and hold you tight when all you want to do is run away. And you should be prepared to do the same for them.

Perhaps I simply place more value in relationships than others. Too much value, even. But if you can’t turn to your friends in times of need, who can you turn to? I know that the person with whom I had the conversation thinks that I act like this because it’s my best friend. She’s jealous of the friendship I have with my best friend. But it’s not like that. I’d be feeling like this if any of my friends were in this position. I’m not about to give up on anyone just because they aren’t ready to help themselves or allow someone to help them. I believe that you should never ever give up on someone. You might not be making it any better, but at the same time, your friendship could be all that is keeping them alive.

Friends are supposed to be here for you through thick and thin. For every tear there is a time for laughter, but if you don’t climb the mountains together, you’ll never get to see the beautiful views from the summit.

Living. Laughing. Loving.



One thought on “Giving Up

  1. Pingback: Reflecting on 2014 | treasurethememory

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