The year 2012, was by far the hardest year of my life. I didn’t realize it then, but looking back I would say that I was suffering from depression. My life was falling apart and I had no control over it. It didn’t matter what I did or how hard I tried, nothing changed and my spiritual reserves finally diminished. I was in a dark pit that I could not get out of.
No matter how exhausted I was, every night I would lay in bed thinking about how to fix my life. It would take me 1-3 hours to fall asleep. Then throughout the night I would wake up with my baby or other children which started the process of trying to fall asleep all over. By the time morning came, I never felt that I had slept at all.
The days consisted of me running things over and over in my mind about my life. I was trying to convince myself that I wasn’t crazy. I was torn between reality and the part of me that kept trying to soften the hardness of what was happening in my life. I was so burned out by fighting this mental battle. I would frequently turn on some Christian music and lay on the floor feeling lifeless. My kids playing around me was like background noise to this constant battle in my head. On those days, I would be praying nearly every second that I could get through that one day or even make it to lunchtime, or dinner, or bedtime.
I distinctly remember when I hit my lowest moment. I was laying in bed looking at the stars out of my window. I rolled onto my knees again pleading for specific struggles I was facing to go away. I wanted to run away, but knew that I couldn’t. I had to be there for my children and really, I knew that there was no running from my life, but I just couldn’t take it anymore. I finally just said aloud, “It is not worth living through Hell if that is what it takes to get to Heaven.” At that point, I didn’t care what eternal consequences I would face, I just wanted my trial to be taken from me.
When Carl B. Cook was called as a General Authority for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, he finished his first week feeling extremely overwhelmed. He got on the elevator at the Church Administration Building and was staring down at the floor wondering how he would ever fulfill his calling. President Thomas S. Monson (the President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) walked into the elevator and asked “what are you looking at down there?” Elder Cook quickly looked up as he recognized the Prophet’s voice and responded, “oh nothing.” To that, President Monson replied, “it is better to look up.”
The phrase has stuck with me. It is better to look up. I too have been given a certain calling in life, as is every person on earth, It felt so overwhelming at the time, but I knew I needed to “look up.” From that motto along with what I was experiencing came the creation of this song.
If you are reading this and are feeling any bit of this despair in your life, I testify that it is worth it to hold on. I know what it feels like to see no end in sight. I know what it feels like to wonder if you will ever be happy. I too have felt that there was no purpose to try anymore; that it really doesn’t matter how hard I try to do everything I should. I was wrong though. I know with every piece of my being that someone is there beside you. I look back on that time and I see now how Heavenly Father’s hand was in every detail of my life. He is with you too. He is leading you to somewhere better. Accept where you are and what you are dealing with, but then push forward and allow Jesus Christ to take the load. There really is hope that the darkness can go away. I wish I would have heard those words or at least allowed myself to believe them when I was so miserable. Heavenly Father loves you and wants you to be happy, but only He knows what path will help you reach the place where you will be most happy. Look up and trust Him.