Resilience is the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress…It involves behaviors, thoughts and actions that anyone can learn and develop.
– American Pyschological Association
i mentioned resilience in a recent post. i feel compelled to mention it again today, after witnessing, along with the rest of the world, the moving images of congresswoman gabby giffords as she returned to the floor of the house of representatives for the first time since she was shot in january. gabby did not suffer a devastating brain injury because of a random act of violence. she was specifically targeted by a gunman because of her political views.
to my mind, her courageous and symbolic decision to be present today for the historic budget vote sends several important messages:
- to those who believe that violence is a legitimate and effective means to resolve differences of belief/opinion, you will not prevail, as long as there are people like gabby.
- to those (politicians) who believe that engaging in brinksmanship with the world’s political and economic systems qualifies as leadership, you will look small and foolish, as long as there are people like gabby.
- and, most importantly, to those who are seeking to engage in the process of resilience and to display courage in the face of adversity, you will have inspiration, as long as there are people like gabby.