Who cheers for you even when you fall down? No, I’m not talking about enemies, these are the exact opposite. These are the people who cheer because they know you’re going to get back up. These are the people who know you are going to hop back onto your board and paddle back out. These are the people who cheer because you were brave enough to go for it in the first place.
I’ve noticed in the surf culture that people (friends and strangers alike) cheer for their fellow surfers not only when an epic ride is scored, but also when a full attempt lands in a complete wipeout. I personally have emerged from the water after being tossed over the falls feeling utterly defeated. I’ve come up and questioned my skill level. I’ve come up and thought “maybe that was a sign to paddle in.” I’ve come up feeling fearful to paddle back out. Until, until I hear the voices hooting. It’s through their hooting and hollering of encouragement that I hear these words… “I see you. I see your dedication. I see your tenacity. I see your strides EVEN in your falls. And I my friend have fallen too. And I my friend know you too will get back up, I know you will wipe the saltwater from your eyes, and I know you, you my friend will paddle back out. I also know that when you do, the next wave could be one of a lifetime, so get back out here.”
We’re all in this together, it only appears like an individual sport on the surface, and this goes for life too.
So this is my plead to you. I ask you to join the choir of voices. I ask that you cheer not only during triumphs, but during pitfalls as well. I ask you to let out a roar of encouragement. I ask you to see the bravery of the attempt regardless of the outcome. I ask you to feel compassion in your bones and a fire in your heart that sends a beacon of light, a ray of hope, and an ocean of love to whom you are cheering for. Because this is how people get back up, this is how people wipe the saltwater from their faces, this is how people paddle back out, and this is how humanity not only survives, but also thrives.
And when you are the one who falls, because we all do, listen for those voices. Listen fully with complete awareness. And most importantly make sure one of those voices is your own.