I love to watch boxing, but I hated that the fight didn't end in the way I wanted it to. I usually tend to cheer for the underdog...sometimes they pull through and surprise everyone with a win and other times they don't...either way...I express a lot of emotion. I'm either jumping up and down screaming, "YES!" or I'm ranting about how my fighter coulda won. This man I was cheering for, was in the worst physical shape of any of the boxers. It was obvious even just by first appearance. Amazingly, when he was called up to fight...to "tow the line"...he did so willingly...without any hesitation or fear. I wondered, "Is he brave...or stupid?". He was determined to give all he had and he did. He fought like a true warrior...as if it were the last fight he would ever have...as if his life depended on it. He was shorter and weaker, but he didn't just fight, he went to battle and gave it all he had. After the fight, one of his fellow "contenders" said to him, "Man, you have the heart of a lion! I'm proud of you. You have NOTHING to be ashamed of.".
Many times, when the losing boxer would return to the locker room to be interviewed, he was sad or frustrated or regretful. Sometimes, they would even cry...these big strong men...they cried...and they expressed regret. This man did not. He fought in a way that allowed him to hold his head high and make no excuses. When his children came in to see him, he sat them down and taught them. He didn't cry or ask their forgiveness. He told them that he gave it all he had, and he told them that in life they should always fight for what they want...that they should go after what they want with all they have. They didn't lament his loss or hang their heads...they were so proud of their dad...and rightfully so.
There was one comment this boxer made at the end that made me reflect upon my own defeats in life. He said, "If I had had one more round, I coulda had him." I think about the times when I lose...when things don't go according to plan...when life "knocks me out". How do I react? Do I stop or do I go ONE MORE round? My first instinct...my natural instinct...is to give up...feel bad...change direction...think of myself as a loser. That's the easy thing to do...but holding your head high no matter the outcome...because you know you gave it everything you have...that takes inner strength. I'm not there quite yet, but I'm trying to learn to have the "heart of a lion". I want to live my life in such a way that even when I am defeated, I can hold my head high with no regrets...knowing I fought...knowing that I gave it all I had and feeling good whether I win or lose.
I sat down to watch my favorite show that night a few years ago...to be entertained...but I learned something and gained a new resolve instead. I made a decision. I want to live as a warrior...with a brave heart...and an open mind. I want to live in such a way that even when I am defeated, others will say of me..."She has the heart of a lion."