“Fight one more round. When your arms are so tired that you can hardly lift your hands to come on guard, fight one more round. When your nose is bleeding and your eyes are black and you are so tired that you wish that your opponent would crack you one on the jaw and put you to sleep, fight one more round remembering that the man who always fights one more round is never whipped.” -Gentleman Jim Corbett
If you notice in the quote above it doesn’t say anything about winning the fight, it just says to keep fighting.
I’m a bit of an expert on getting my butt kicked, as a fighter and as a human.
I’m not complaining about it. The literal butt kicking’s that I get are usually asked for. The figurative ones… well some of them are asked for too but most of them are just because that’s the way life goes.
Getting kicked when you’re down is part of the human experience.
“When it rains, it pours.”
“Into every life a little rain must fall.”
“Everything happens for a reason.”
And all of those other clichés that people like to throw in your face when you really don’t want to hear them and think they are the stupidest things anyone has ever come up with.
But even so, life sucks. It’s never fair. And no one escapes it without their share of scars and bumps and bruises. Some people more than others.
Some people are broken by the beat downs of life and they never recover.
Some people are spurred on to overcome them.
Joan of Arc is probably one of my favorite women in history.
The first time she ever went into battle she was just a child and she said, “I was born for this.”
Have you ever had that feeling? I was born to be exactly where I am right now.
I don’t know about you, but those moments in my life have been few and far between. And even when I know that I am doing what I was born to do, sometimes it would be a whole lot easier to throw in the towel.
I’m in my 30’s and to be quite honest with you, I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up. I want to be able to make money at writing. I want to be able to make a living at doing things I love and that I feel like I was born to do.
Some days I want to do everything and there are quite a few days when I’m so tired I don’t want to do anything at all.
Joan of Arc freed an entire nation because of what she knew in her heart she was born to do. More than just knowing it, she actually did it. Even though she could have lived a normal life, with far less hardships, far fewer bumps and bruises and then of course there was the whole being burned at the stake thing that she could have done without. She did what was in her heart to do without apology and without regret.
That’s inspiring to me.
She could have given up. She could have stopped fighting. She didn’t have to fight that one more round but if she hadn’t, the world wouldn’t have changed. The world we know now would be vastly different and no one would have ever heard of the simple farm girl named Joan of Arc that led an army and defeated a powerhouse.
Now I know I’m no Joan of Arc, but I’ve always been convinced that I’m going to do something in this lifetime to make an impact on this world. I’ve never voiced that to anyone before. I wonder if that’s a common feeling among people or if I’m an anomaly? I’m leaning towards anomaly because I see far too many people who settle for mediocrity and are perfectly happy doing so.
I’ve never even been able to imagine that.
I won’t be happy until I do something I deem noteworthy, which may or may not ever happen.
I haven’t ever really been able to make most people understand the drive, the sense of urgency I feel within me to do something big.
It’s as foreign of a concept to some people as doing high level math is to me.
It pulls me, it pushes me. It shapes me. It affects me physically every second of every day.
Sometimes it angers me.
Sometimes I really don’t want this.
I want to have a normal life.
I want to be Miss Suzie Homemaker Barbie Doll who knows how to shop and cook and sew and doesn’t bite her nails and can afford to go get a manicure.
I wish I knew how to do my makeup just right and I was able to find the appropriate outfit for every occasion.
I wish I fit in with the other soccer, baseball and football moms instead of being the one sitting off by myself while the other women whisper about me. Simply because besides having given birth, I really don’t have anything in common with them.
But that’s not who I am. I’ve never really felt like I fit.
Sometimes I am glad I am different from most.
Sometimes I see my uniqueness as a wonderful gift.
But most of the time I am acutely and painfully aware that my life would be far easier if I wasn’t different. If I played the part that society says I should play.
But I can’t. I don’t know how.
A good friend of mine told me a few days ago that he knew from the first time he met me that I was tough. He said, that when he found out I was a fighter, he wasn’t really all that surprised because of the sense of toughness that he always got from me.
I actually hear that quite a bit.
Then he said something that startled me. He said, I knew you that your toughness isn’t a result of your fighting, your fighting is a result of your toughness. I’ve always known that, but I’ve never had anyone else recognize that in me before.
That small insight into what makes me; me was so refreshing.
That one little sentence actually made me resolve to keep fighting one more round.
I’ve always been tough. People have told me that my whole life. My mom used to call me a tough old bird, even when I was a child.
But lately, the urge to give up has been overwhelming.
I am tired. I don’t have the strength to put my guard up. My nose is bleeding and my eyes are black and I can barely see because of the sweat pouring down my face. Having someone knock me out would be a sweet release. But until that happens, I’m going to keep doing what I know to do in life and in the ring and keep fighting one more round.
I’m not going to let someone whoop me because I gave up. I’m not going out like that.
Keep fighting one more round.
“That which does not kill me, better start running.”