The strength of one’s character is tested in tough times… and not when everything seems smooth and fine. When chips are down, when people around you accuse you despite being good and gentle… when they desert you while you need them the most - some of them who you trusted the most, who you helped the most and, even, gave your neck to, staking your life and reputation - yes, when these people around you make you feel lonely in times of your crisis, Life reveals who you are… your character!
“Life is not a bed of roses,” in school, most of us wrote essays on this topic. But, at that age, we had hardly touched life, the real life. In a way, Life was a bed of roses for most of us, when we were young kids. It was only when we began to walk out into the real world, that we began to sense how it really was outside…
You may find that people are selfish… They may not be loyal to you all the way… They may even turn into your enemies when you expect it the least… You may find yourself alone…
So, amidst such provocation, how do you come about?
It really takes steely substance to remain faithful to your own ideals and values when challenged, provoked, ridiculed and accused. Not to get polluted, poisonous and corrupt in such times is not a virtue of the weak… it is a virtue of the brave.
Life may not be fair to us, always. It is not expected to be so… It is from our side: whether we are fair or unfair to our own selves… whether we are our own true friends or fair-weather friends!
Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) sums it up brilliantly when confronted by his own young son:
“Let me tell you something you already know…
The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows.
It's a very mean and nasty place,
and I don't care how tough you are,
it will beat you to your knees
and keep you there permanently if you let it.
You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life.
But it ain't about how hard you hit.
It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward;
how much you can take and keep moving forward.
That's how winning is done!
Now, if you know what you're worth,
then go out and get what you're worth.
But you gotta be willing to take the hits,
and not pointing fingers saying you ain't where you wanna be
because of him, or her, or anybody.
Cowards do that and that ain't you. You're better than that!
I'm always gonna love you, no matter what.
No matter what happens.
You're my son and you're my blood.
You're the best thing in my life.
But until you start believing in yourself,
you ain't gonna have a life.”
“But it ain't about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done!” The more I reflect on these words the more I get convinced, that our character is shaped by our resiliance and our capacity to remain true to our paths…
We need challenges… We need to be tested!
Pic.: Azriel D'Souza