When I realized I was not resilient is when I began my journey to resilience.
Resilience by definition is the ability to adapt, and recover from difficulties. This can only mean one thing, that the road to resilience is far from a walk in the park. It is connected to suffering in some way, shape, or form. Our own resilience is determined by how we process and react to adversity.
Photography by Stacy Landers
Resilient people are seekers and doers. They see a challenge and go forth. What others may deem as a failure they deem as a lesson learned. Resilience means you refuse to be discouraged.
For a brief period in my life, I went through a phase of false resilience. By that I mean, I had convinced myself that the best thing to do in all tough and trying situations, was to grin and bare it. I convinced myself that in-order for me to be of value to anyone, I needed to be quiet. I needed to do what I was told and no back talk ya’ hear!
For anyone who knows me, past or present, you know that sitting still is a far cry from my true nature. I gave it hell though. That-experience lit a fire within me. It was painful, it was brutal at times. There was a day when I questioned my ability to make even the smallest decisions on my own.
I remember vividly, every-single thing about that day. As a matter of fact, it was Easter Sunday. What better day to rise?
That’s the day the road to resilience began for me. It was as if God, The Universe, Angels, picked me up and said: “hey girl, we gotta get outta here”, and that’s what I did.
The road to resilience did not end the day grace shed a little light on me, but it was the day that I started paying attention. It wasn’t painless, and far from easy.
“It’s your reaction to adversity, not adversity itself that determines how your life’s story will develop.” -Nelson Mandela
My journey began when I realized “not reacting” is also a terrible way to react. It’s a slow cut to the bone with a butter knife.
Day one, who am I? Day two, who am I? Day twenty-four, who am I?
I am grateful became my mantra. The inner work required me to be patient with myself and it required me to be kind to myself. It still does.
There are no shortcuts. Grin and bare it has no merit. In other words, Resilience means choosing not to settle for less than what you deserve. It means YOU WILL find a way. Come hell or high water, you'll get there.
When you learn to burn the bridge and take the island, you do not give yourself any option but to succeed or die trying.