Yes, I made up a new word.
No, I’m not sorry.
Yes, it is required for this situation.
Yes, you can use it too!
Adulthood has been remarkably hard the past few years, for me, and likely for many of you as well. I have felt the relentless waves of stress, trauma, loneliness, and fatigue wash over me through broken bones, surgery, home repairs, insurance woes, and isolation. I have fought to maintain my head above water in a wide variety of ways. Always struggling, but never alone.
In some senses the post-surgery, non weight bearing phase, was easier than now. I knew it would be awful, tiring, and sedentary. But I didn’t expect any different, so it lived up to the hype. The return to work phase has been more challenging in some ways because things that I didn’t expect to be difficult have been.
So, I have a new plan to maintain some semblance of sanity and laughter in this season. I am going to start game-ifying adulthood. It’s Me vs. Life, but it’s a collaborative game; I don’t play it alone. The main goal of this game is to live with joy, balance, and laughter. But the rules are ever-changing, the game board is full of twists and turns, and the opponents are fierce. It’s the hardest game I’ve ever played.
Currently, I’m in the level entitled “Healing in All Ways Imaginable.” I’ve worked on physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of the game and pulled in other players throughout. I’ve already defeated the following levels: Complete Doctorate, Purchase Home, Surface of the Sun HVAC Catastrophe, and Hot Water Heater Explosion. And they were rough. Lemme tell you, they are no fun to game back to back to back. I’m currently undergoing a fun side quest also called “Rotten Wood at my House.” It’s a fun one. I recommend it.
Not only am I viewing life as a game as I defeat “game bosses” left and right. But I’m hearkening back to my Girl Scout days and will from now on be earning Adulthood Merit Badges for all successful conquests. They will look lovely on my character card.
So far I’ve got the following merit badges: Bought a House, Survived when Said House Tried to Kill Me, Survived Surgery, Coddled Kenny, Asked for Help, Maintained Sanity, and a super rare one: Flipped Mattress. That one had eluded me for quite some time actually.
Life has felt like it was piling up with tasks, duties, demands, and failures lately. It has been helpful to me to look back and see how far I’ve actually come in the past month, year, and decade. Reflecting on where I’ve been, and how I’ve persevered through other challenging times, encourages me to forge steadily onward.
Forge. Steadily. Onward. One Merit Badge and Game Level at a time.
So, what merit badges have you proudly earned?