By Rebekah Hibbert, Guest Blogger October 8, 2015
image courtesy Rebekah Hibbert
Often the greatest lessons in life are unspoken. I have been lucky to have influences throughout my life that have taught me by example. Over the past year my dad has been in a battle, against the unceasing grip of cancer, but it has only further proven why I am blessed to have him as an influence and pillar in my life.
With only two daughters my dad could have chosen to treat us like princesses or only let us take part in activities that were considered ‘more girl focused’. Somewhere along the line my mother and him must have decided, screw that. He would always wrestle with us.
The name he gave himself during these bouts was "big girl." This character he created was meant to represent our fiercest opponent on whatever team we were on at that time. And he would not relent until we had either dominated the match or we tapped out. He never let us win. We had to earn it. Out of these silly wrestling matches came important lessons, ones that once again, were rarely spoken; there will always be someone stronger or faster, someone who should beat me, but that didn’t mean I couldn’t win. It just meant I would have to work even harder.
What you want will not just come to you; you have to work for it and you have to be willing to deal with the fact that sometimes you will still fail.
It was also a reminder that hard work never guarantees a win. Oftentimes I would still lose to "big girl,"but I might as well put up one hell of a fight. That may seem like a contradiction, but isn’t that the way life is? What you want will not just come to you; you have to work for it and you have to be willing to deal with the fact that sometimes you will still fail.
After all, at times, life is unfair. Watching my dad and his battle with cancer over the past year I have realized he is still "big girl;" strong, willful, unyielding, and poised to take on anything. He has continued to remind me that while the fight may not always be fair, that doesn’t mean you don’t fight, and that doesn’t mean you can’t win.
I continue to see a man unshaken in his faith, not only in God but in himself. And I have realized his faith is why he never set limits on my sister or me, personally or professionally. If he was living in faith then how could he ever tell us we could not be something? He couldn’t and he never did.
While the fight may not always be fair, that doesn’t mean you don’t fight, and that doesn’t mean you can’t win.
His faith is an unyielding belief that anything is possible and so for his two daughters it is as well. His remarkable faith in God, himself, and his family is an unending gift that I cherish. It is one he has rarely had to say aloud to me. While pushing me to always be my best self and follow my dreams, he has shown me his faith, and more importantly, he has imparted it upon me.
I share these stories because I think it is important to know why people are who they are, and my dad is a big part of who I am. But they are also reminders that regardless of the obstacle ahead or the battles you face that sometimes feel unconquerable, if you work hard and put your faith in the right things, then there is always hope. And that is something we all need.
What is an unspoken lesson that you have learned- from your parents or anyone? Tell us below!
Rebekah works in Sports Medicine. It is her hope to represent the ‘real’ girl’s daily struggles and triumphs. In her free time you can find her running, lifting weights, reading, writing or trying new restaurants with her husband.
Every girl is a work in progress. If you need more help, click here.