Perseverance – The Native American Way

Bailey here again –

I can’t stop reading Keep Going by Joseph Marshall III. I wish I could get all my friends to read it. We all run around thinking that nothing bad is ever supposed to happen to us. And then when something does, we’re flabbergasted and wonder what happened.

But Old Hawk says we must expect difficulties, because they will come. That is part of life.

“No one embraces disappointment, sadness or grief, but neither should we deny ourselves the necessity of experiencing the entire array of human emotions. When our spirit tells us it is time to weep, we should weep.”

Now I’m a pretty tough girl, and I admit I don’t like to cry. Especially in front of people – won’t happen. But in the secrecy of my bedroom, there have been times when I’ve let the tears fall. As ashamed as I always am, somehow when all the tears are gone, I’m better able to handle whatever the situation is. I guess that’s what Old Hawk means. If we let our bodies and spirits do what they need to, we can actually heal faster and cope better.

Old Hawk says there is truth to the axiom ‘whatever doesn’t kill you can make you stronger.’ But he says the most important word is ‘can.’ We are in charge of how we deal with the tough things. It’s our decision to take one more step, to try one more time, to wake up one more morning. That’s how we become strong.

HOW COME NOBODY EVER TOLD US THIS STUFF BEFORE? We’d certainly be more prepared if someone had.

Old Hawk says that how we handle the hard times is how we become who we are. We choose whether we’re going to give up and fail, or if we’re going to build integrity and become a person of worth.

In the old days, the Lakota chose their leaders from men of experience. And not necessarily those who were great warriors, displayed bravery, and had many successes on the battle field. They chose men who withstood the storms of life and grew strong from them. Because strength built from adversity does not crumble under further adversity.

I want to be – no, I’m GOING to be – a strong, vibrant person who can handle the storms of life. What about you?

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Shelley Batt
    Jan 27, 2011 @ 18:49:24

    Sounds like great advice, Bailey. If I could get out of my way more, I’d learn those lessons faster.


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