To be resilient is to be flexible yet hearty, buoyant…adaptable. A resilient person is someone who tends to recover from or adjust to misfortune or change. I bet we all have someone who pops to mind, or maybe even a few come to mind. I know, for myself, a few people come to mind. As this little project plays out and I learn the power of the pause, I have been listening to books that could be listed under the tag of self help. In fact, I am pretty sure that’s what I google searched to get my present book playlist- I am just on a quest for perspective and introspection …. I have found that I am not a very resilient person…. Or my resilience gene is waaaaayyyyy slow on the recoil. I am totally going with slow on the recoil and maybe a bit impaired by my self-destructive gene. Humans are innately resilient creatures, we all have the ability to heal and grow after setbacks or injury. I know I am not alone when I say I wish I was more of a resilient person; I feel like it’s something we all strive for on some level. The word itself stems from the latin word resiliens meaning to rebound or recoil, as a character trait its the person’s mental ability to recover quickly from misfortune, illness or depression…. Those people possess a set of powerful traits. I do think I prefer humble resilience over arrogant resilience- it’s like the difference between a winner and a hero. Each week I find a new challenge with this project. A good amount of it stems from my ability to get my thoughts from my head to the paper, but I appreciate that it forces me to pause. I am not just thinking about the word but also the person who gave me the word….. So far, even if I don’t share about it in the post, each person is reflected in their word post- some more than others. I knew that some words would have a much stronger reflection through their words, and this week is one of them. While I have not asked anyone permission to specifically write about them, everyone who gave me a word knew it was for a project. This week is one of those words that is so very very fitting of the person who gave me the word.
I have known him since early childhood. I think of him and much of his family as if they are my own family. As you get older, you appreciate the people you grew up with and have common history with. I am also still really good friends with his sister through all these years. I have often thought of him as a big brother, and he was always nice to me as a kid. I always picture his freckles and him smiling. He was older than me, but as close as I was to his sister, I always followed him and his family. He experienced a personal tragedy several years back in which he suffered an injury that eventually led to an amputation of one of his lower legs. One sentence does not do justice to what he went through and what the past decade must have been like for him…… but the word he chose was resilient…. It was probably the first word that came to his mind, because he is resilient. I scheduled these words out for the year weeks ago. Some people’s words will fall on a week for a specific reason, some just landed in the open spots… and some I am finding will randomly become important at the time I write about them. A few weeks ago I began working out with this resilient man’s sister and she mentioned that he had just put his prosthetic leg back on for the first time in a few years. You see he has also been affected by chronic inflammatory neuropathy meaning he probably has a lot of pain…. But he is still resilient enough, driven enough, to continue forward progress. To me that is the kind of resilience that heroes are made of, to take scary and sometimes painful steps (seriously- no pun intended)…. To be driven enough to not just keep going when the challenges feel so overwhelming, but to actually keep bouncing back and striving to be your best you. This week’s word is my favorite to date- but I really hope from the bottom of my heart I end many many more of these posts with those words!