Perseverance Through Adversity

Perseverance Through Adversity
Photo by TJ Dragotta / Unsplash


"Don't give up. Don't ever give up." — Jimmy Valvano, 1993 ESPY Speech.

In the spirit of Jimmy Valvano's timeless words, I've come to understand the profound power of perseverance and grit. This article is a journey through life's unanticipated challenges, a reflection on personal resilience, and a lesson from the world of sports, all woven together to underscore the essence of never giving up!

My Journey: Learning from Life’s Challenges

Four years ago, my life took an unexpected turn when I suffered a stroke. The reality was harsh; accepting my new normal was a process filled with turmoil and introspection. Despite the praise as a "stroke survivor," I often ponder the preventable nature of some of my issues, owing to past decisions. Yet, in embracing the gravity of my circumstances, I've learned to cherish life's every moment

woman sitting on bench over viewing mountain
Photo by Sage Friedman / Unsplash

The Essence of Recovery

Recovery is neither linear nor swift. It's a daily battle, marked by small victories and setbacks. Beyond physical healing, it's a mental marathon, demanding unwavering positivity amidst constant challenges. "The only journey is the journey within," Rainer Maria Rilke once said, encapsulating the psychological depth of recovery.

Lessons from the Sports World

The transformation of the Detroit Lions under Coach MCPC is a testament to resilience. From a winless season to formidable contenders, their story is not just about sports; it's about life. Their journey mirrors the essence of personal struggles, teaching us that with a shift in mindset, any setback can be a setup for a remarkable comeback.

gray building at night
Photo by Patrick Tomasso / Unsplash

Understanding True Grit

Resilience is an understated virtue. It's about facing life's storms and emerging stronger. My journey is a testament to this; so are countless stories worldwide. From athletes overcoming career-threatening injuries to individuals battling life-altering conditions, their stories are a beacon of hope and strength.

female soccer players at the field near people on bleachers
Photo by Chris Leipelt / Unsplash

The Path Ahead: Continuous Growth and Adaptation

My journey is far from over. Each day presents an opportunity for growth and adaptation. To those walking a similar path, remember: progress, no matter how small, is still progress. Embrace your journey with hope and tenacity.

silhouette of man walking along field leading to mountain
Photo by Mukuko Studio / Unsplash


Life's adversities are inevitable, but giving up is not. This narrative, akin to the Detroit Lions' resurgence or the silent battles fought by many, is a reminder of the human spirit's resilience. Let's hold on to the essence of Jimmy Valvano's message: "Don't give up. Don't ever give up."

A lot can be learned from the Detroit Lions organization when it comes to stroke recovery and that even in the NFL you can have success if your patient and persistent and stick with a plan and what works for you and I think the Detroit Lions have shown very similar resilience and approach that can be applied to both individuals and their particular stroke journey even though we all want it to happen overnight, it does take time for everything to come together and that is something that is proven to have lasting and long-term success!!

a black and white photo of a lion
Photo by Colin Sabatier / Unsplash
About the author
Will Schmierer

Will Schmierer

👋 Hey I'm Will, Stroke Survivor since December 2019 at the age of 37! February 2020 I was diagnosed with MS🧡 If you have questions or need support, feel free to reach out

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