The logo for M.T.N Poetry; poems written and owned by Molly from Transatlantic Notes.

Hidden Strength and Survival: A Path Forward (A Poem)

The ups and downs of life form part of the experiences that influence, shape and guide us. Challenges and disappointments — even the ones that set us adrift or scrambling for stable ground — can gift us the ability to learn and grow. What tests us the most often develops resiliency, strength and problem-solving skills that help us navigate our future.

Some of the most significant lessons we’re taught come from our struggles and hardships. And while this wisdom and grounding won’t offset the physical or mental difficulties that we need to work through to steady ourselves; they can provide fortification and creative solutions that come into use the next time we face something heavy.

Experiencing adversity undeniably shifts how we relate to ourselves and the people/situations around us; crises, setbacks and heartache change our perspectives and emotions. What weighs on us can feel burdensome or begin to strain our well-being — even when we’re on our way to discovering better times ahead (which will come, with time).

A poem by Molly from Transatlantic Notes called, ’A Path Forward’ that reads: We do not remain unchanged by the things that weigh us down; they alter how we carry ourselves as we search for settled ground. We live among our doubts and fears and the challenges we face; unsure about what might come next, blind to the good that awaits. But maybe these lessons are heavy because some nestle soulfully deep; they build a resiliency and wisdom that is forever ours to keep. Even when we feel diminished or lost to the stars and sun; new pieces of ourselves are forming, our healing has already begun.

While developments like this can be tough to handle, many of these experiences end up bolstering us. We transform in a number of ways — sometimes because of subtle, almost undetectable adjustments that quietly begin working inside us before we’ve caught up and realized how beneficial they are. Through trials and tribulations, our emotional intelligence improves, we nurture lateral thinking that identifies creative solutions and we reinforce our compassion (especially for those enduring something similar). All of these represent strengths that end up encouraging us to heal.

This poem is for anyone who is questioning the value and insight that current hardships bring; there is a path forward no matter how murky or tough it seems. I’m not saying any of us should blindly hold on to positivity or that overcoming something will be quick and easy. It is, however, a heartfelt reminder that we can — and will — persevere. As André Malraux once declared, “You did not return from hell with empty hands.”

What challenges have you overcome; how have they changed you?

Further Info:

It takes courage to ask for help; if you need further support, know that you are valued, loved and not alone:

NAMI Helpline – a free, nationwide U.S. resource that offers experienced peer-support guidance and advice

CheckPoint – global (by country) resources for mental health support

This is part of my M.T.N Poetry Collection. If you share my poetry on social media, please tag my Instagram and/or link to my Poetry Page; do not edit my work or remove my name or website. If you wish to use my poetry in any other way, please contact me to ask for permission so that information regarding terms of usage can be provided. Thank you.

49 thoughts on “Hidden Strength and Survival: A Path Forward (A Poem)”

  1. This is a really great poem and it feels like it’s been written with my experience in life. Too many people don’t seem to understand that the hardships we’ve face can leave a mark on sense of self, even decades later. It’s a real privilege to not understand how that’s the case, because I can’t imagine anyone who’s not gone through some shit would think that way. I look forward to your next one


  2. This is a lovely poem because we all go through hardships at some point and even when it feels like there is no end, we will persevere and grow as individuals.


  3. What a beautifully written poem. Whenever I’m faced with difficulty, I always ask myself what it’s trying to teach me. This poem is such a great reminder that you’ll always come out on the other side stronger and there’s always a way through. Thank you for sharing Molly. Very touching words!


  4. Truly exceptional poem, I loved it and I also believe that the difficult times shape us and make us stronger. And if we can shift our view on them from being difficult to being a learning experience, we might even be able to go through them differently. But that is difficult. Thanks for sharing your wonderful and creative mind with us.


  5. I’ve never related to a poem so much in my life. It perfectly sums the past year for me. My favorite lines are “they build a resiliency and wisdom that is forever ours to keep.” Thank you so much for sharing!


  6. Love love love this, Molly! January/start of the year can be such a tough time and this is exactly what some people need to read/hear ❤

    Lynn |


  7. What a beautiful poem and post. I feel like this one hits right at home with my own situation I shared on my blog about our family trauma. Thank you for sharing this. I plan to share your poem image, but will link and tag you in the posts.


  8. This is a beautiful poem. I agree that struggles in life can transform you into a better person. I’m currently going through some challenging tasks at work and it has helped me become stronger and more resilient.


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