In which Uncle Iroh helps me in my ongoing struggle with depression

by sketchyfeminist

My last post was about Avatar: The Last Airbender, for no particular reason other than that I like Avatar: The Last Airbender. And I wasn’t planning to bring up Avatar again so soon … but plans are worth what you pay for them, really. (And most plans are homemade.)

So, the Boyfriend and I have been marathoning ATLA again. Because we like it and because he gave me the DVDs as a birthday prezzie (yay!). And we just finished up Book 2: Earth (Avatar calls its seasons “books”), which means we just got to the episode where Aang asks Iroh a question, and Iroh answers with this:

Iroh: I don’t know the answer. Sometimes life is like this dark tunnel. You can’t always see the light at the end of the tunnel, but if you just keep moving …

[They enter a well-lit cave full of shining crystals.]

Iroh: You will come to a better place.

And I know, I know, it’s not exactly the most original sentiment (A “light at the end of the tunnel”? Please.) but this moment spoke to me anyway.

Maybe it’s because Iroh never says “Look for the light at the end of the tunnel.” Because if we can’t see the light, then looking for it’s not likely to do us much good. What I really like about Iroh’s little speech is that it’s not so so much the “light” that matters as it is the movement. What matters is to keep moving, even without any sign that things will get better.

Especially without any sign that things will get better.

Because sometimes, all you can do is keep moving.