Perseverance

Perseverance. 

Was there ever a truer word? I have put in a lot of effort, time and heart into pursuing my dreams. Many of these hours were doing things that were not my dreams, but I thought they might be. See, the funny thing about dreams is that they continue to draw you in. They feel real and they feel tangible. You are able to see things you’ve never seen, feel things you’ve never felt and do things you’ve never done. That is their beauty. They allow for more than you have. 

It’s the business of realizing your dreams that is not always so pretty, and so very tangible. The road to success is one of great challenges: disappointment, confusion, sadness, even anger. Yet, the great great joy that is felt each time you overcome one of these challenges is worth each challenge times ten. Still, it takes great courage to risk encountering these things in just the hope that you may succeed. It takes great strength to get up again after you've fallen. It takes great love to get up over and over again. 

The road is not filled with one of these challenges, but all of them, and they will find you many times along the way until you reach your goal and even after, as you grow your dream. This is where perseverance comes in. Let’s unpack that word. Severance: a breaking off or separation. Each time you face a challenge, a seeming defeat or setback, there's is a break in your progress to your goal. You and your dream are separated. Per: through. You must get through that challenge to be connected again to your dream. Referenced directly from dictionary.com Perseverance means:

“Steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.”

So the act of perseverance is that through separation you come together again. I don't want to miss the value of going through the heartache and being pushed down time and time again. This is only meaningful if it is worth it, and if you read my blog post on Happiness, you will know that it is. However, I want to push that idea even further. The second definition stated by dictionary.com is

“Theology. Continuance in a state of grace to the end, leading to eternal salvation.”

That is to say, grace: your passion, your calling, what you are meant to do will, in fact, deliver you into eternity. I think this is a beautiful concept. For me, based on the joy that I feel from pursuing my passion, this idea makes perfect sense. Of course, being my most happy, passionate, useful self would bring me to my truth, my justice. 

Some may not believe or agree with this concept of eternity or salvation, but I do hope that everyone believes that happiness is in fact found within oneself. That happiness comes through feeding one's soul with what it is excited by.  That happiness is the goal of life. And that in our death, it would be appreciated that we lived our precious life to the fullest.  

When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, “I used everything you gave me.” 
—Erma Bombeck, Author

--Nina E.

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Nina Lavelanet-Lewnau