I always find it funny what inspires me to write, or what moments I choose to do it in, whether it be in the car whilst toddler P naps, in bed at 3am because I need to channel my worries in order to sleep or whilst eating marmite on toast on a Sunday morning, drinking tea watching her copy the dancers on screen as we restart our Strictly Come Dance Sunday breakfasts. She’s fierce this little one, she’s just taken my hand and said, “if you ‘old mi ‘and you can spin around and sing freeee like dem ballerinas!” She’s full of spark and in her little 3 year old mind as she copies them, she looks just like them, even if she’s in dinosaur pjs with chocolate spread around her mouth, in her mind she’s in sequins, glitter, shimmer tights and red lipstick, gliding across the floor. She. Is. Fierce.
I was given that advice recently. I went for my first external job interview in years and the best bit of advice someone gave me was to go be fierce. I knew instantly what she meant. She meant go in and show them what I was made of, don’t try to be anything but me and not to shy away from the feisty fire I get in belly when I’m excited and have ideas. Not to shy away.
I shied away from a lot for a long time. Not necessarily openly but internally, I held back. Gradually though over the last few years it’s come back, my just watch me attitude has evolved and grown in strength. I’ve learnt from toddler P to get me, “I can do it myself” outlook back. She’s taught me to be fierce again.
Toddler P is fierce, she’s a warrior. I’m told all the time that she’s just like her mum, even people that didn’t know me before my abusive relationship dulled my sparkle, they could see I had that confidence and determination. So it was always there, it was never killed completely, I just need to dig deep to unleash it again. Now there’s no stopping me. Yes that’s right, there’s no stopping me.
The other day we were playing at home and little P was drawing, I left her for a moment to do some mundane household task when she came creeping up behind me, “I’m a tiger mummy, roar, roar, roar” I looked up and she was prowling at me, covered head to toe in black marker pen. She’s drawn stripes and whiskers all over her arms and face. She looked fab. She even kept it on for a walk and play in the park that afternoon. I didn’t care, I was proud of her confidence, her creativity and her fierceness. She sees everything as a challenge (yep even my patience and desire for her to go to bed at a decent time) she has this feistiness and confidence that I noticed from so early on and I love it. When I saw her as this tiger, swinging from a tree branch in the woods we were walking in, I knew then that I need to walk into the interview as her. Fearless, fierce and me, not rude, not cocky, not nasty or inappropriate but professionally fierce. I need to let them see my passion and drive, my confidence and assurance in what I do and what I know.
I didn’t get the job, but that’s not really the point of the post, it was a great experience I did really well and got excellent feedback. But that’s not the point of the post. The point is, is that life brings challenges and you’ve to face them with boldness and confidence. You’ve got to either force yourself to push through and do what you can to overcome obstacles.
I had to teach a lesson this week on resilience and I referred to me and little P. I told them about how she learns through trying again and again and how she won’t give up learning how to do something until she’s cracked it. Which she doesn’t, even when we’ve only 2mins to get out the door before we’re late, she’ll still learn to do those shoe buckled herself. I also told them that I’m one of the most resilient people I know. Which I am. I didn’t go into details but I told them that I had faced situations that could have made or broken me and I decided to use them to make me. And that’s what it’s about really isn’t it? You can either let things break up or you can be fierce and let them make you.
I watched an inspirational programme the other day, it was a documentary based on Rob Burrow a rugby player diagnosed with MND. It was heartbreaking, but also what a man, what an inspiration, despite a terrible condition making him rapidly deteriorate, he isn’t letting it destroy his spirit. Wow. He’s not letting it destroy his spirit. Life is going to throw crap at you, quite frankly it’s going to be really shit sometimes, but you’ve got to learn to power through it. I’m not saying don’t find things hard, I’m not saying don’t feel real emotions and have ups and downs, what I am saying is don’t let those difficulties rule you and your life. Learn to push through and carry the crap stuff with you because otherwise you’ll never enjoy anything.
I could’ve given up easily, I still could give up now sometimes but there’s always a way out. Learn to laugh, learn to ask for help and learn to find solutions. If you’d have asked me 3 years ago if I’d have ever mixed cement and built a wall, learnt to jump start a car, drill into a wall and put up shelves or change the oil in my car I’d have laughed at you in the face. Now, I take these things, swear for a moment, phone a friend, ask the audience or google it and then laugh later and the palaver I went through to get to end result (have I told you about digging through a gas pipe 🤦🏽♀️😂). Because life’s challenges big are small have to be pushed through. You have to be fierce, whether it’s a big life changing issue or a flat tyre. You to be fierce.
We all have the strength is us, we have to choose to use it. There’ll always be someone worse off, fighting a harder battle and if they can then so can you. Be brave. Be strong. Be fierce.