Like any other living thing on this planet, I have my battles.
Frankly, it doesn't matter if I am a microorganism living on the seafloor or the ruler of a powerful country, I will face struggle, and my struggle is vital to who I am. The battle is an important detail to my story.
I have never learned more about myself, and other people, and about life in general than when it felt like I was fighting a losing battle. Everyone has a battle, what separates the cowards from the heroes, the defeated from the victorious, or the monsters from the angels, is the reaction, and how the battle is fought.
Some of the most wonderful, kind-hearted, compassionate people that I have the honor to know, have seen and experienced more horrific things in their lifetime than any human should ever have to know. These people do not get by and fly through life because of pity of people that haven't encountered the same demons, they get through life with a sense of joy and happiness because they know when life is good. They know that the world doesn't owe them anything.
In the more unfortunate cases, after seeing too many hardships, some people turn cold. They shut the world out, and grow bitter towards everything that the world has to offer. The price of happiness is too high if it means the chance of getting hurt. This is where the monsters start to take shape. This is where the monsters make themselves at home.
In my own personal experience, I found the times that I fell the hardest, the times I screwed up the most, and the times that I faced the most heart wrenching experiences, that is when I found things I did not know I wanted, the things I never knew that I needed. More often than not, I grew the most in my life when circumstances were at their worst. I grew because I was humbled. That is not to say that at times I haven't been the monster in my own story. I have fallen more times than I can count.
There are a lot of cons to falling. For example, falling usually hurts like hell. Falling can be a bitch. You lose things you worked hard for. You sometimes lose people you thought you needed. You lose the things that the world tells you over and over that you need; money, power, fame, recognition. Falling hurts. Nobody likes the view from rock bottom.
Falling has a lot of upsides, believe it or not. The most obvious of these upsides includes that there is nowhere to go but up. I have also learned that the people willing to help you get back to where you need to be, they are the people worth keeping around. It is easy to be around someone when they are at their best, you see the people who truly love you when you see who sticks around when you are at your worst. Usually the people hardest to love are the ones who need it the most.
Falling gives you a fresh start. Falling down is not the part that matters. Every person in the history of mankind has taken a good hit from time to time and fallen flat on their face. Anyone who claims that this hasn't happened to them is kidding themselves. Or they are in denial. Or maybe they are still finding the strength to pick themselves up off the bathroom floor. The falling isn't what defines us. The rising, how we bounce back is really the only thing worth talking about. That is why we love stories about the underdog. Anyone can fail, everyone does. The underdog is the one who comes back, bigger, better, stronger than anyone would have ever expected.
Whatever your battle is, know that it is important to your story, but it is not the only part that matters. Everyone is rooting for you, even if you feel like the underdog. More importantly, know that wherever you are, whatever point of life you find yourself in in the moment, you were meant to be there. The plot thickens every moment of our lives, and all parts of our story are important.
The story is not in the falling, but how you decide to rise. Have the strength to be the hero in your own story. Slay your dragons, storm the castle, and rescue yourself. Lean on people. Ask for help. Do whatever it takes to be a hero in your life. You were not created to be the antagonist in your own story.
There are lots of benefits of falling. The best is how it feels to finally find your footing again. I am on my way to finding mine.