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Confessions of a realistic pollyanna

Like a buttress she stands

It is an image promoting breast cancer awareness.  It tells of how survivors, when faced with the challenge of cancer, have had to make changes and then carry on.  It is a witness to the strength of these women who overcame devastating news and then moved on.  It is a testimony of their 


When I first saw the post, I missed the pink ribbon and the other signs that this was about breast cancer awareness.  I just thought about all of the people who have faced great challenges in their life and remained firm and steadfast.  I thought of all the people who could easily have been knocked down and yet stood firm and remained upright.  I am inspired by those who can do so and I always wonder if I could have their strength in the face of such adversity.

When I first saw this post, I was reminded of my old dog Bella.  Bella was a wonderful dog with many things that made her special- her love of music, her playful side, etc.  But one thing Bella hated was water.  The first time we took her to the beach, Bella cried as we were having a fantastic time in the water.  She was too scared to go in.  Only when another dog pushed her into the water, did her cries subside.  She liked the other dog, saw how he enjoyed the water, and so she got into the lake.  But she did not like water.  She hated getting wet.  

Bella lived a very good life.  But it was funny how this dog who hated the water, who hated getting wet, faced rain when she was older.  She would stand there defiantly with her head braced against the wind and the raindrops.  It was like she was saying, she was here and she had survived.  Nothing was going to get the best of her.  She had survived 14 years and overcome her fears.  "Do your worse rain, I am a survivor."

As Lent continues, we know we face many trials.  We will have fears to deal with.  We may have serious diseases such as cancer to struggle against.  We will be tempted and tried.  The exhilaration that was there on night of Jesus' birth and the awesome wonder at the empty tomb don't mean anything without the difficult journey of Lent with their trials by the devil and the pain of being betrayed by a friend.  But may we have the courage to stand up to the storm, just like Bella did.  May our sails be righted so that our journey can continue.

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