No matter what, the will to fight is ingrained in each of us.
When a child is born, they are usually not a passive bundle being pushed out of the womb. Not only do they struggle and fight for life, but the struggle itself helps the baby’s circulatory system work better. My spouse, who has midwifed fourteen births, says that the baby always fights for life. We are born fighting, and the fighting helps us live.
This also happens to butterflies. If you were to cut open a chrysalis to help the butterfly get out, the creature would not be able to fly. Their body would be large, their wings poor, shriveled things. Only through the struggle of getting out on their own do they gain the ability to fly. The squeezing of the small opening pushes the blood and fluids out of their body and into their wings, which expand during emergence, and harden shortly after.
Chicks struggle to peck their way out of the shell with nothing but their own strength and an egg tooth. Everything depends on this tiny battle. From the first moment of consciousness, the fight is on. Then, it continues in the struggle for food, territory, and breeding partners.
As humans, a lack of struggle weakens us. No weight lifter in the world got strong without lifting heavy things! There are no quick, easy answers. Everything requires effort. Handouts and welfare require effort too – but this time the effort is spent by the workers who pay for the welfare. The old saying is trite but true: There is no such thing as a free lunch. This is true in society, in nature, and everywhere else.
Life, all of life, is a war to be won with deadly consequences for failure. If we don’t fight disease, it takes over. If we don’t fight depression, it kills us. If we don’t continue to learn and grow, we slowly die. Though it might seem so, I am not being morbid – instead I am celebrating the toughness we all have inside. Many of us may not realize it’s there, but it is!
Even in birth, there is no safe space. Every day our bodies are resisting pathogens, bacteria, viruses, fungi. The moment our bodies die, they stop resisting, and the pathogens win. We rot. The very fact that we are still alive means we are winning the fight for one more day.
What will we do with our victory?