Have you ever wondered something your whole life only to discover there’s a word that answers the question?

For me, that word is resilience and it answers the lifelong question, “Why do some people overcome all obstacles while others fall apart at the smallest stressor? 

Are some people naturally resilient? My best guess is, yes.

Is there a resiliency gene? My best guess is, no.

Even raised in the same family with the same life lessons, some siblings are more resilient than others. Some see failures and challenges as opportunities for growth. Others see failures and challenges as a threat to their identity.

Can resiliency be learned? Probably.

Knowing a resilient person and watching her model resiliency does not guarantee that another will adopt resiliency as a lifestyle. However, knowing such a person who teaches a program that fosters resiliency increases the likelihood.

I have been blessed to know such a person, who has made it her life’s mission to “Choose Love” and to teach others how to do that through a proven step by step program of Social Emotional Learning.

Scarlett Lewis is the mother of Jesse Lewis who was one of 20 children murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary on December 14, 2012. I met her in February of 2013 when the trauma was freshly palpable. Over the years although her loss and pain will likely never pass, her resilience has increased manifold.

So, I present to you, Scarlett, the world servant.

Spitting into the Wind

Although I realized years ago that the world was not going to be “saved” or “perfect”, I did expect that the efforts made by me, my friends and colleagues would have a positive impact and leave a lasting legacy for the generations to come. But, with climate disasters increasing, with news of anger, hatred. disrespect and violence bombarding us, with divisions by gender, nation, ethnicity and religion increasing, has anything really been accomplished?

As I ask myself this question while the world goes spinning off in a different direction from the one I imagined—(did the poles shift and I just missed it? Did we slip into an alternate reality?)—I recall a lecture by a Waldorf mentor from decades ago. He said there would come a time that we would feel as though we are “spitting into the wind.”

The online free dictionary defines to be spitting in(to) the wind:

 To be doing something totally pointless, fruitless, or futile…
to be wasting one’s time doing something that will not or cannot come to pass.

He also encouraged us that even though we would could not see any value in our deeds that we should still keep on keeping on.

If have often told clients that affirmations and positive actions are like drops of warm water on clocks of ice. We never know whether we have feet, inches or mere millimeters to go before the ice is gone and we can see through to what is below. Just keep going, drop by drop by drop. Though right now we do not see the results, persist.

I do not resist that which seems to oppose me for resistance only gives it more power. I am focused on that thing and not on what I want to accomplish. So instead I persist.

“The best way out is always through.”
― Robert Frost