Why Do You Endure?
In different seasons of perseverance I find myself thinking about resiliency, about the ability to bounce back and keep going. About freedom and what that really means or looks like and how that can be or can it be in fact alive in the midst of suffering and trials, or even more so be birthed because and out of the hardships we may face in this life on earth.
I think at the heart of every human is the ability to thrive, to live. To fight against resistance that comes against that. Even in apathy or confusion there is a life in that, in the struggle, showing there is something true worth fighting for and something much deeper wanting to emerge.
I don’t know why I endure some, most days. In the day in and outs of the grind, the daily tasks, to dos, and obligations. I have realized after some time that those things don’t seem to go away, it is my perspective of them and what that means to me that will ultimately change how I respond to and engage with them. And that daily living and engagement is where most life has been found for me, as it is in the present time and being. Looking to the future or the next can bring a sense of enlightened hope or fulfillment that never seems true once you get there, so I’ve learned to keep that in balance, while experiencing most in the present and being present, because that is a gift that I know that I currently have. The gift of today, of this moment, and what I am seeing, experiencing, and learning.
But sometimes that gift seems like it needs to be fought for, held on to, obtained, or in the least sought after. I find this resistance most comes when my perspective is unsettled, when my sense of who I am is in a growth phase, when my basis of worth starts attaching in subtle or loud ways connected to what I do or don’t do, or what others may perceive me to be.
The daily feels like endurance when I base my sole fulfillment in the jobs or the tasks of the day, because as life giving as those can be at times too, they won’t ever have the capacity to fully meet and fulfill all that I long for.
And maybe that sense of longing is a good thing, as it connects to hope, that propelling the continual discovery of life, learning, and more. Where we place those things, what things fulfill that, may never fulfill that, and how to live in the midst of that daily while growing in appreciation of the beauty of it, the resiliency and victory of the human spirit to endure, spurring one another towards the same.
Sarah Fujimoto is a 2005-06 Oakland alum, and 2009 graduate of the Eastern University/Mission Year program. She is Mission Year’s Philadelphia City Director.