Stand up and be counted. Stand for the weak. Stand hand in hand with her in public. Stand still in the dark until your eyes adjust. Stand when you hear the National Anthem. Set your moral compass and stand fast in the right direction. Stand up and be counted. Don’t get caught without a leg to stand on. Ask others to stand with you. When your opponent falls, stand down. Stand for what is right and ask others to stand with you. In a world plagued with conformity, stand out. Teach them to stand on their own two feet. Stand on your tip-toes to get a better view. When fear strikes, stand fast. When being measured, stand tall. Stand on the edge and look down. Stand up in a boat. When they say you can’t do it, dig your heels in and stand firm. Stand side by side and feel your strength. Don’t stand in her way. When everyone else is gone, have the courage to stand alone.
Superman stood for truth, justice and the American way. The Ironed Jawed Angels of 1918 stood up for the rights of women in America. Ben Cohen stands up against bullying. Gandhi stood for civil rights and freedom for all citizens of the world. The Stand; we’ve all taken it for one reason or another, and regardless of our motivation, we all stand for something at some time.
All too often, we wander through our days without giving notice to the many stands we take. Whether we are defending others, promoting a cause, proving a point or showing our strength; we all stand. I’ve seen it in action, been witness to the results, and even participated. I’ve felt the fear, the power, the joy, and the helplessness that taking a stand can create; and still I stand.
It’s important for me, living in a world where the actions of others, whether reckless or calculated, directly impact my life and possibly the lives of others, that I continue to stand, both for myself and for those who can’t. I’m not a hero or a savior, I don’t have endless wisdom or insurmountable strength, and I don’t want power or fame. I’m just an ordinary person looking for other ordinary people who want to do extraordinary things.
It doesn’t take much to make good things happen; all you have to do is stand.
“Guard fiercely that which others want most to wrest from you. Your inner wild places and the freedom to visit them often. The gateways to your very soul, the keys to your secret garden and all that you cultivate therin. Guard against attacks of all sorts by those who covet your light and envy your brilliance. Create shields visible and invisible, and infuse them with the power to deflect invasions of your body, mind, and spirit. Guard the security of your home as if it were more valuable than the grandest place on Earth, for surely it is. Establish your personal boundaries and guard them against interlopers who would barge in against your will. Be the guardian of your own solitude and that of others, and peace shall always be yours.” ~ Rachel Snyder
Sometimes things don’t quite work out the way you had planned, and you have to make some drastic changes in your life; this is especially difficult when it involves dissolving a relationship that is toxic and damaging. Well, having dissolved the relationship, I am now faced with guarding what it is I have chosen for my new life, and guard it I will.
Some people would say I gave up and quit on something that I should have fought harder to keep, but those people don’t know the whole story. The details of that situation are no longer important; what is important is that I got out because I realized that I no longer guarded what was important to me. I let everything I knew about myself get taken away without a fight. No more.
Life can be incredibly complicated and unpredictable, but there is a way around all the chaos; guard. Guard what you have learned about yourself, and trust it. Guard your heart from hate and fear. Guard your sense of worth and ignore the challengers that say you are less than you truly are. Guard your character and dismiss those who would try to create a false picture of your life. Guard yourself from the anger of others by letting go of your own anger. Guard all that is yours, material and emotional, and guard it with your life.
The past few years have taught me that sometimes a sense of self-preservation will lead you away from people, but it will also lead you toward those who you do not have to guard yourself against.