Wait a minute, am I really thankful for adversity today? You’re dang right I am!!!
Most often when I’m thinking about things I’m seeing them as pictures and movies in my head. Kind of like living metaphors in my brain that help me process what’s going and determine the appropriate strategy moving forward. Tonight at yoga the movie reel started playing and it reminded me of exactly what I am thankful for today.
So there I am in an old video. Kind of blurry and hazy, like trying to watch network TV via a 20′ antenna as a kid in northern Wisconsin back in the early 80’s. The scene is a boxing ring. This isn’t a normal boxing match though, this is an old school bareknuckle fight.
I’ve just successfully won a tough round against my old buddy Adversity. It was a tough one and we both landed many blows, but I definitely took the round. The bell just rang and I turned to go to my corner to take a seat, rest up, clean up, get a drink, and prepare for the next round.
As I’m walking away I feel a tap on my right shoulder (the camera view is towards my back and all you see is a hand reaching out to tap me on the shoulder). Instinctively I turn to see who it was and POP, POP!!!
The jerk of a buddy of mine, Adversity, had snuck up behind me, tricked me into turning around, and then let loose. He hit me with a couple of quick jabs, one to the nose and one to the mouth. Blood immediately starts running down my face and I feel a tooth suddenly no longer attached to my gums. Stars are floating around me everywhere for a moment. What I can clearly see is Adversity staring me down with a mischievous smile on his face. He reaches out a hand and gives me the “Morpheus bring it” gesture from The Matrix.
I spit out the tooth off to my right side. I brush the back of my left hand across my nose and mouth and fling the yuck off to my left. I turn my head and crack my neck. I interlace my fingers and crack my knuckles. There’s a gleam in my eyes that is one part crazy and two parts determination. I smile and charge forward to go into a bonus round with Adversity.
The funny thing is that even though it was a shot I wasn’t expecting, I still am thankful for my old buddy Adversity. When I’m struggling with him there are so many ways that I am joyful through the frustration. I know that through all of my battles with him I’ve always won because I will persist. Any time I engage with Adversity I am reminded to be thankful for the many family, friends, and teammates all around me who will support me, strengthen me, and will help us all be successful. Each battle with Adversity leaves me stronger than I was before. I learn from each experience and become a better person for having fought through it. Adversity reminds me I’m still alive and still learning. All of the dreams I have are beyond Adversity, it is the wall I must crash through to earn what I want. When facing Adversity I am more often engaged in the moment, in the present. Each battle with Adversity leaves me stronger and for that I am thankful.
Hey old buddy, I wasn’t quite ready for you so quickly, but now that you’re here… Let’s have some fun!