Last month, I took my children (a.k.a. “the boy”, age 7 and “the girl”, age 2.5) to a Bubble Show at our library. It was a really cute presentation in which the performer, known as “The Bubble Man,” slyly demonstrated several scientific principles for the children by showcasing his bubble making skills. And despite my daughter’s fierce pride in being (as she puts it) a “Brat Bubble Show,” we all enjoyed it.
One of stories the Bubble Man told us was about hardship and struggle. He said that when he was a child, he came across a butterfly trying to escape it’s chrysalis and decided to help it. To his dismay, the butterfly died shortly after he released it. He later learned that all the effort expended by butterflies as they struggle to free themselves actually condition them to survive once they finally do escape their cocoons. In other words, their hardship makes them stronger.
Sometimes it can be difficult for us to realize that the pain, hardship and setbacks that we endure are a necessary part of our existence. Our choices and experiences make us who we are and serve to highlight all the great things in our lives. How can we know joy if we haven’t experienced suffering? Love without heartache? Success without failure?
Think about the first time you reached a fitness goal. Would it have been half as exciting if it was easy? Capt. James T. Kirk once said “I don’t want my pain taken away! I NEED my pain!” And I wholeheartedly agree. After all, without knowing my pain, how would I know when I am free of it?
So, accept the struggle and know that not only will it make you strong, but like a butterfly, it will eventually allow you to fly!