In it, she referenced the phrase “productive despair”—the despair one feels, that will ultimately launch them to the next point. It is in reference to the creative process, but I feel it resonates to the human process, as well. Shapiro says,
I tell students all the time that there is a kind of despair we feel as writers and artists that is not only useful, but necessary. It’s the second-to-the-last fathom, the murky, dark waters an artist must move through before reaching the very bottom, the place from which she can use all her strength and push up, up, up toward the surface. There’s light up there, but first we have to live in the depths.
Though, watery Scorpio, that I am, I admit I spent too much of my time living in the depths of the ocean. I have, since, found balance, but I appreciate the lessons of those dark waters. They do have a purpose, in both creative and spiritual growth.