Cold-A Poem

Updated on December 3, 2017
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Kari spends much of her time thinking about the meaning of life and time. She has concluded love is the meaning and time doesn't exist.

Cold and Alone

Source

A Poetry Challenge

I was reading some of Genna East's work and came across a poetry challenge she had published 10 months ago. In this article she had two videos. One was called "The Grey" and the other, "The Shadow".

Both of these videos were about humans, lost in a wilderness, and wolves. They are poignant video shorts. The endings are different, but the need to survive is shown in both. I do not want to say too much about these videos. I want you to have a fresh look if you, also, accept this challenge.

Here is my poem:

Cold

I’m cold and forgotten,

So tired...and worn.

I cannot stir.

The fire is out,

The matches are gone.

I just want to rest

In this dark freeze,

And dream of your warmth

Surrounding me.

Cold, So Cold

Source

Depression and Grey Days

We all get depressed sometimes. That day we just do not want to get out of bed, thinking, "why?". But, what about those people to whom this feeling is just an everyday occurrence. Everyday, cold and alone, trying to stand firm and find hope.

Depression actually makes your days gray. A study done by Dr Ludger Tebartz van Elst at the University of Freiburg shows that there is an organic reason. The retina of depressed people have a significant decrease in the ability to notice contrast, as opposed to people without depression. The world really is "gray" for people with depression.

Frozen

Emotions that should be free flowing are frozen like this waterfall.
Emotions that should be free flowing are frozen like this waterfall. | Source

Emotions are Frozen

Many depressed people have emotions that are frozen. These emotions become frozen in childhood because we were taught they were not acceptable. Maybe you were told, "If you want to cry, I'll give you something to cry about!" Now you find it is almost impossible to cry. Even when you want to cry, you can not.

Maybe you think you must always be strong and never show weakness. Have you ever heard the saying, "God helps those who help themselves"? Have you ever heard your parents complain about people less fortunate, calling them lazy? These seem like simple things, but continued exposure to these attitudes as a child can lead to repressed emotion.

The Struggle

I struggle with depression every day. I am also one of those people who can not cry. Part of my depression comes from how my body hurts every day. I am not as strong as I once was and this upsets me greatly. I struggle with my physical weaknesses and it causes fear. I was always very strong physically, even for a woman. Now I am not.

I worked as an operating room nurse. I moved around the country often. I love going new places. As an operating room nurse, I could work anywhere. I would often become a travel nurse until I found a place I liked. Now that is gone. I have lost my independence.

I have also lost much respect. As a nurse, people respect you. Now that I am not a nurse, I do not get that automatic respect. Plus you cannot see my injuries. I worry now that people will group me in that "lazy" category. This and the loss of my independence hurt the worst.

At times I do not want to get out of bed. This is especially true when I am having a good dream. Why come back to reality if I can be so happy in my dreams. Why wake up to the hurt. Other days I have to get out of bed when my pain wakes me up. I much prefer waking up to my dreams.

Hope

Hope frees us from our chains.
Hope frees us from our chains. | Source

"In life, No matter what you are going through, have faith, and believe your sorrows won't last forever because what time does not heal God will."

— Rashida Rowe

Hope

I think many depressed people have lost, or are losing, hope. Hope is the thing that makes the world seem brighter. It is the emotion that tells you everything will get better. Hope is the antithesis of depression. Life without hope is dim and dark.

I know, I almost lost all hope this past year. But, I am slowly fighting to regain it. No one ever said life would be easy. To regain hope, it helps to notice the small, insignificant wonders in the world. A flower (even if it is a dandelion), a sunrise or sunset, the laughter of small children, these are small pleasures to be thankful for. I think the more we are thankful, the more hope lives in our heart.

Depression is a deep dark pit. It is hard work to climb out. Even to climb out far enough to see a light. And once you can see a light, a dim, pinprick of light, the climb does not get much easier. Some days it is all you can do to hang on and not fall deeper into the pit.

Hope is that dim light. After much fighting with myself, I finally found it again. This doesn't mean that I have hope everyday, it just means that on the days without hope, I can remember what it is. This is a giant step in getting out of the pit.

I am a fighter and survivor, if nothing else. I plan to find my way out. I will win. I get impatient at times, and feel like it is a useless fight. But, I know in my heart that I must, or I will be gone. I will not lose the fearless person I once was.

© 2017 Kari Poulsen

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    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 2 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you, Peg, for letting me know that you found a way out. I try to be strong. I was strong and fearless, buy somehow I lost my fearlessness. I really want it back, lol. I am fighting it, and I have good days and bad days. Much better than when it was all bad days. Thank you again for your words of hope. Hugs back.

    • PegCole17 profile image

      Peg Cole 3 days ago from Dallas, Texas

      Kari, You sound like you're still a very strong woman who faces adversity with a willingness to overcome the obstacles. Depression is something we all battle, but debilitating illness is a tougher road to walk. I remember a situation in my life where everything was gray and I couldn't see my way out of it. But, thankfully, I managed to find happiness again. I wish for you all the strength you need to overcome the daily pain and see yourself for the true worth of the beautiful person your are inside. Hugs.

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 6 days ago from Ohio

      Toni, Thank you for the suggestion. I like his work very much! :)

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      Toni 6 days ago

      Perhaps it would help you to watch a few videos from Ralph Smart. He's on youtube under Infinite Waters. I find him very practical, engaging, and inspiring. He's helping me to make sense of this crazy world.

      All my best to you & yours.

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 7 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you very much, Hari. I am happy you liked it. :)

    • shprd74 profile image

      Hari Prasad S 7 days ago from Bangalore

      Beautifully expressed emotions. Liked this hub in totality. Thanks kari.

      - hari

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 7 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you, Catherine. I'm so glad you liked the poem. I know when I'm having a bad day, the day is actually darker. It was nice finding out that there is a physical reason for this. :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 7 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you so much, Dora! Changing how our mind thinks takes living in the moment to notice when it's taking a bad turn. Living in the moment helps the ability to notice the small miracles of life.

    • CatherineGiordano profile image

      Catherine Giordano 7 days ago from Orlando Florida

      I loved your poem. "I just want to rest in this dark freeze." That is exactly what depression can feel like. Plus yo taught me a lot about the physical manifestations of depressions. For instance, changes in the retina make things literally look grey. That explains a lot.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 8 days ago from The Caribbean

      Your expressions in this article are very touching and consequently, very helpful. You not only share the problem, but also the solution. "It helps to notice the small, insignificant wonders in the world. . . on the days without hope, I can remember what it is." Powerful!

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 9 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you Nikki! It is true that we need to have hope. If you have ever lost hope, you know that it is an awful feeling. I'm very thankful that my parents raised me to be a fighter. :)

    • nikkikhan10 profile image

      Nikki Khan 9 days ago from London

      Hi Kari,,

      An outstanding effort of hope and will power.Of course,we should never lose hope,no matter what happens because only hope and firm determination can get us through to good times.

      Many Blessings.

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 9 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you, Eric! I know exactly what it is like to be in a room filled with family and friends and feeling like I am all alone. Like I don't fit in. Luckily, I have a wonderful, loving family. I really don't know what I would do without them.

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 9 days ago from Ohio

      Kim, Thank you for your blessings! I am glad you enjoyed the poem. Thanks again! :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 9 days ago from Ohio

      Stella, Thank you so much! I am a fighter, and I will continue to fight this until I overcome it. Being on HubPages has helped me greatly. It gives me something to focus on and everyone is so nice! I wish you all the best! :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 9 days ago from Ohio

      Dr Kulsum Mehmood, Thank the Lord your son is in remission. I know how hard it is to deal with mental illnesses. I lived with a schizophrenic for about 5 years. You and your son will be in my prayers. God bless you also! :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 9 days ago from Ohio

      Linda, Thank you so much! I am very determined. This is not me and I know that. Now I just need to feel it I guess. I would love if this helps others. Helping others is one of my favorite things. :)

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 9 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Very well done Kari. Those tough unseen illnesses are a bad deal. I think each well done description of the unseen pain is a big help to everyone.

      Depression is the loneliest illness. I try to remember those folks who are alone in a room full of people and give them my prayers.

      Thanks for a look behind the curtain.

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 9 days ago from North Carolina

      Kari,

      I enjoyed your poem and your willingness to share your battles with depression.

      Blessings Always,

      Kim

    • stelaligizaki profile image

      Stella Aligizaki 9 days ago from Greece

      Thank you so much, Kari for revealing your thoughts and emotions. This year was a bad year for me too! I agree that hope keeps us alive. Latins used to say "Dum spiro spero", "While I breathe, I hope". I like to hear you are a fighter and survivor. This is the key to human life. I also believe only good human relations make us happy. I wish you the best.

    • Kulsum Mehmood profile image

      Dr Kulsum Mehmood 10 days ago from Nagpur, India

      Thank you Kari for sharing. I would like to tell you that you are not alone in this. I am an eye doctor doing full time duty after retirement age, because I need to do it, I am a single parent and I have many medical problems leave aside caring for my only son who is having bipolar disorder. Thank God he is in remission at the moment. Still God is great. And God bless you Kari dear.

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 10 days ago from British Columbia, Canada

      As Genna says, this is a beautiful response to her challenge. I'm sorry about the difficulties that you're experiencing, but I love your determination. I'm sure that you've helped other people by publishing this article. Best wishes to you, Kari.

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      Thanks Verlie, I had posted this with just the poem, then went back and edited it to include the parts about depression and the music. My power went out last night, just as I was about to put in the music, lol.

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      Bill, Thank you, that really means a lot to me coming from you! Thanks for stopping by. :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you so much, Genna! I am honored that you include me. Thankfulness is everything in life. It helps me greatly. :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you, Jo! Concentrating on the beauty of the world does help. Some days are less grey than others. I really think counting your blessings when it's bad helps. Thanks again. :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      Venkatachari M, Thank you for your best wishes! I will overcome this. I have overcome many things in life and I am determined to beat this. All the determination in the world would mean little without the love of my family and friends. :)

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      Verlie Burroughs 10 days ago from Canada

      Kari, love the music you've added, beautiful. :)

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      LInda, I bet you understand the pain of following that love of cooking! I crushed my right hand and it has never recovered. I have pain everyday in it. If I'm going to cook I have to plan 3 days. One to do nothing, so I can move it the next, one to cook, and one to recover. I hate that I cannot cook like I used to.

      Thank the Lord for children!! This is the reason I keep going also. I thank God several times a day for my loving children and my daughter who supports me. Thanks for the prayers. They help!

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      FlourishAnyway, Thank you. I am on antidepressants, I have been for about 3 years now. The antidepressants really were not helping much. This year they started me on a new med, and it seems to help with the anxiety. Such a relief!!

    • k@ri profile image
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      Kari Poulsen 10 days ago from Ohio

      Thank you, Verlie. I understand the depression of the winter. Growing up in NJ, February was grey. The skies were grey, the snow was grey and it seemed spring would never arrive. But it did, lol, every year. Now I make myself spend time outside, no matter how cold. It helps. Sharing my own experience is important for myself and others. Mental illness should not be a bad word. :)

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 10 days ago from Olympia, WA

      You said a great deal with few words in your poem, something I admire in poets. Great description of depression....well done my friend.

    • Genna East profile image

      Genna East 10 days ago from Massachusetts, USA

      Kari, this a beautiful response to the challenge, and addresses what the "Shadow and The Gray" represent. Lovely work.

      "I think the more we are thankful, the more hope lives in our heart." Absolutely, and your words of hope do homage to this so well. I am honored to add a link to this hub in the original challenge. Thank you for sharing this with us.

    • jo miller profile image

      Jo Miller 10 days ago from Tennessee

      Thank you for sharing this, Kari. I think you are right that concentrating on the positive and beautiful in life helps us through all situations. Sometimes, though, life is more difficult than others. Sending best wishes to you early this Sunday morning.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 10 days ago from Hyderabad, India

      Very nice to see you sharing your experiences and thereby helping others with similar circumstances. Even though I had gone through some similar circumstances many many years ago during my prime age, I overcame them by witnessing many other people with more pains and sufferings. Even my wife had passed through many wretched conditions throughout her life but always tried to overcome those troubles and pains.

      Wish you all the best in your endeavors.

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      Linda Lum 11 days ago from Washington State, USA

      Oh dear Kari, thank you for sharing your thoughts and feelings. You are not alone. I too am plagued with chronic pain. I have osteoarthritis in my hands and feet--parts of our bodies that we are forced to use all day long. Sleep is a blessing but too infrequent.

      I was not aware of the studies on depression, but what you have written certainly rings true. I have been in an abusive relationship and if not for my children I would have given up long ago. They are the only reason I carry on.

      Thank you for sharing. I'm sure it was painful. I will pray for you, for your journey to find light again.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 11 days ago from USA

      Thank you for your candor in sharing your own experience. Although the events and reasons may vary, many people experience the same feelings that you describe. Know that you’re not alone. There may be a chemical imbalance in play. Keep writing and sharing.

    • snakeslane profile image

      Verlie Burroughs 11 days ago from Canada

      Kari, Good to see your poetic response to to the 'Shadow and the Grey' challenge. You've taken it to a place I had not considered. I appreciate how you connect the shadow, and the grey with the darkness and hopelessness a person would feel suffering from depression. Where I live some people are dramatically affected by the winter darkness. I know I am. It is tough to get through. There's different names for it. Cabin fever, seasonal affective disorder, with symptoms similar to depression. Thanks for shedding some light on the subject. I think it's important for people to realize they are not alone, and there may be ways to cope. Appreciate you sharing your personal experience. That takes guts.