Resilience /ri-zil-yen(t)s/ n. – an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change.
I first saw this word in a book I was reading in middle school. I had already become a big reader at the time, but none of the books I had read affected me the way this book did. When resilience appeared in the dialogue, I immediately fell in love with the word. It even became my philosophy on life. When in doubt, in pain, or at a loss, use resilience.
From then on, resilience protected me from despair. Without it, I do not know how I would have handled my uncle’s death or my aunt’s cancer. But I did it. I overcame the sadness and loss in my heart. Resilience was like a caring best friend holding my hand during my darkest days. Resilience was like a savior leading me by the hand out of the dark and into the light of the world again.
That is what resilience does. It pulls you back to who you are because when you are sad or have feelings of despair, you are no longer your true self – although you might not like to think this, it is true.
And the nice part of resilience is that it can help you with the other things in life that do not involve death and illness. Resilience can be the pillars that a house so desperately needs for support against the weight of the seemingly endless responsibilities and obligations of life that is on its roof. In other words, resilience helps overcome stress that everyone in the world experiences at some point in his or her life.
I may only be a teenager, but there have been many responsibilities in my life that definitely added up until I was at my breaking point. But, resilience stood by me and prevented me from bursting; it assisted me in prevailing over the stress.
So whether you are experiencing the death of a loved one; the unfairness of having someone you know become seriously ill; the stress of having numerous responsibilities at once; or any other happenings that create doubt, pain, or loss in your life; use resilience. It will pull you out of whatever state you are in and have you back to being happy and carefree in no time at all. This I believe.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.