The definition of perseverance is to keep at something despite the difficulties, oppositions or discouragement. 

Resilience empowers us to push through obstacles and difficulties in life. While surrendering and succumbing to challenges may seem tempting, perseverance requires believing in oneself and battling against all odds.

I fondly recall reading John Bunyan’s “Pilgrim’s Progress” as a child and how the character Christian navigated through every trial and tribulation we encountered.

The characters he encountered along the journey represented the obstacles and temptations that can lead us astray.

Even when he strayed from the path, positive characters always guided and supported him along the way.

Nobody ever promised that life would be a walk in the park, and there was never a manual on navigating life, so we relied on our parents to guide us in the right direction.

Some people turn to their faith for guidance, only to be distorted by human interpretations and cultural influences.

Humans are prone to making mistakes; sometimes, learning from them can take a long time. 

Some have learned the importance of avoiding repeating the same mistake through difficult experiences.

Some individuals avoid facing difficulties by always having someone to support them, ultimately hindering their ability to learn and grow.

Life presents many obstacles, but we can complicate it by constantly feeling dissatisfied and craving more.

I have yet to prioritise material possessions. While I enjoy having new things, my focus has always been finding contentment. I would be happy enough if I had everything I needed rather than everything I wanted.

Struggling with my mental, emotional, and spiritual well-being, I found myself on a path of self-destruction. The voices in my head constantly told me that I was not good enough and that death would be a way out.

For a long time, I have been mentally and emotionally unstable and have constantly battled thoughts of suicidal ideation, contemplating how and when to end my life. 

However, after several failed attempts, the last one being in July 2018, I realized that I had to keep going because God would not let me go.

After the loss of my cherished Father, my beacon of strength and love, I knew I had to summon the courage to carry on and persevere through the pain. He was my hero, my world, and his absence left an impossible void.

Though the void left by my Father’s passing would always remain, I knew I had to push through the grief to honour his memory and continue his legacy. I was determined to make my mark in this world, using his values and teachings as my guiding light.

With unwavering encouragement and support from my nephew Chris, I have accomplished numerous goals and continue to be motivated by his constant push towards success.

I have come to appreciate and love my family for who they are, embracing their individuality and accepting them wholeheartedly. 

I have also acknowledged my faults in wanting them to fit into my expectations and have learned to let go of those unrealistic desires.

I have realised that life is not solely about me and what I want. I am a complex individual who often seeks control over situations.

The negative mindset that I have held onto for years no longer benefited me, and while I may not be a complete optimist, I have noticed a positive shift in my mindset.

While I have always been one to uplift and support others, I have now learned to prioritise my well-being and self-care.

Despite facing discouragement and negativity from others, I have persevered with resilience. I have refused to let anyone hinder my growth or bring me down, reclaiming my power and moving forward confidently.

Although I still face temptations and moments of doubt when giving up seems like the easy option, I have found that overcoming the difficulties I have encountered has only strengthened me.

I trust a higher power greater than myself, a God of my understanding.

I don’t rely solely on prayer but also try to fulfil my purpose.

I consciously avoid situations that do not serve my best interests. 

For years, I have been confined within the walls of my thoughts.

Yearning for love and acceptance, I failed to recognise that it was already within my grasp.

My childhood struggles moulded me into that pessimist I was, but I have since gained control.

I believe in the saying “better late than never,” and I apply this mantra to turning my life around.

I sometimes wonder why embracing and implementing changes took half my life. However, I am grateful that I did. It may be too late for some individuals to rectify the wrongs they have committed.

I have witnessed many individuals surrendering to life and finding solace in dwelling on the past. I, too, was once in that position, and I can attest that it is soul-crushing. Sometimes, it takes a tragedy to shake us awake and recognise that life is meant to be lived, not merely endured while waiting for our end.

I remain true to my upbringing, cherishing my values and respect. The only change is that I now think independently and am unconcerned with others’ opinions or acceptance. Who are they to judge or condemn me? Only God has that authority.

I prioritise my well-being above all else, recognizing that nothing and no one is permanent. I maintain balance by living a virtuous life and prioritising my emotional and mental health.

To endure, one must have faith in one’s ability to overcome. 

It requires not just words but also actions.

In everything, there must be a balance.

Natalie M Bleau

Scripture of Balance 

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