A Fighting Spirit

There is a woman that I’ve met on more than one occasion that reminds me of a warrior. She truly has a fighter’s heart. She’s battled cancer in three different places. She’s endured three marriages, lost three out of six children, been a survivor of sexual assault, and still manages to keep a smile on her face when those around her are trying to smile. Her faith in God is strong. She is the type of woman who gets up before her kids, makes sure they have everything they need even when money is so tight that she doesn’t know how she’s going to pay the mortgage. She lost her job due to the pandemic and is working for much less than she made before and yet she will tell you that she has everything she needs. She is the kind of person that I wish to emulate.

I think we all have that spirit that dwells inside of us. It can rise when it needs to, simmer when things get hectic, and can gel when situations call for a cool temperament. She’s learned the art of patience. When I first met her, I was a student at Guilford Technical Community College. For the sake of the blog, I’ll call her Wendy. She was in the cafeteria and she had a loud colored hat on. It was bold and very eye-catching. I’d never seen anything like it so I asked her where she got it. We struck up a conversation about how she made it not long after she found out she had cancer. She couldn’t have been older than twenty-five at that point in her life. What struck me the most was she had an infectious laugh. She had coal colored eyes that could see into your soul. She recognized people from their auras. I thought that was cool. She would tell me how colors would change with a person’s aura based on things in their life. She spoke of how we all have one but only a few could see them.

She approached life with a holistic approach. I think the thing that made her stand out was that she utilized both modern medicine and holistic approaches. She made me understand that when used together, both resources could be a powerful ally in combatting diseases. The other thing about her that stood out, she was flamboyant. She had a zest that made her approachable. Her smile could light up a room and make you feel as if you were seeing a lost friend that time couldn’t eradicate. She was no more than five four. Yet she had the presence of a giant. It was her spirit that stood out.

Over time, I began to forget about her. Then this past weekend I ran into her again. She was like a raging force of nature. We talked incessantly for hours. Then she said she had to get going because she had some things to get ready for but we exchanged numbers and she convinced me to attend a session online that she teaches. It was for a stress relief zoom meeting. When I mentioned that she never looks stressed, she smiled and said that it was because she had learned to let go of the stress and negativity. She mentioned that I looked tired and frustrated. She could read me well. She advised me to stop worrying about what I couldn’t change and to let go of the drama and pain. Pain is not just in the mind. It can be physically daunting but the mental pain can be fatiguing, it can convince a person that they can’t keep going. When the depression and anxiety begin to seep into the cornerstones of our existence, we are sucked dry. We forget how to embrace the energy that is encompassing us to higher plateaus.

Stress is another way of saying

Seriously – Stress can make us more serious about our lives. Often we don’t know how to let go of the negative energy that is surrounding us. Dealing with stress in our lives is critical to leading healthier lives.

Tired – Stress makes us tired. It makes us not want to focus on. Redirecting our attention span can be critical to changing our habits for the better.

Restless – When we find that fighting spirit, we can turn to be restless into restful. Redirecting the energy that drains us can be a way to refuel and re-energize the core complexities of who we are.

Energy – Energy is something that our spirit needs to be sharp. You can’t expect a car to go anywhere with no fuel or battery power so why do you think a human being can condition themselves for a healthy mind and body if it isn’t taken care of? We are in charge of our energy. We fight for the people and issues that are important to us. To do that, we must maintain healthy sustenance in our diets.

Sustains – We have to sustain a healthy environment. If you are around toxicity, clean your environment. If that means cutting ties with those who derail you, it may be difficult but it’s necessary.

Strength – Strength comes from within and with exercise. Make sure you are feeding your mind and body with a healthy regime.

Wendy made it clear that she was a survivor because she chose to never give up. She didn’t want to become a statistic. She acknowledged that not everyone survives and it’s not always because they didn’t try. Often it becomes a fact that their bodies just gave out. What is important is that you fight because you want to survive. You may have family and friends that depend on you. You may be important to various causes but above everything else, recognize the importance you are to yourself. You deserve happiness. You deserve opportunities to let others see you be the leaders that you were born to be. You don’t have to have all kinds of recognition. You do have to believe in yourself. Only you can do that. Others can have all the confidence in the world in you but if you don’t have it for yourself, you won’t have the strength to fight the battles within yourself.

Wendy reminded me that life itself is a struggle but those struggles help define us. Bring out your inner warrior when you need to but never give up on the people and dreams that you have. The future is worth fighting for. We all have that fighting spirit. Be the reminder that others need by exhibiting that spirit with others. Keep going. You may surprise yourselves at the outcomes.

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