Am I a LION? (most likely, yes)
Hi there, lovely LIONS! It’s almost the weekend!
Hope your day includes a cup of hot tea (or iced, if you’re lucky enough to live in a place where iced tea is reasonable in April.)
How is it already April, anyway? March was packed with travel for family, work and fun for Emily and I, but it basically made the month dissolve in 30 seconds.
Today I wanted to clarify something: this whole calling you a “LION” habit we’ve taken up.
Waay back (6 months ago) when this thing began we just started doing it, and have been learning and dreaming and adapting as we go. And while referring to our fellow LIONS was a natural part of our evolution we realize that may not be the case for all readers!
WHAT DO YOU MEAN BY LION?
We include our definition of a LION in every email sent to new subscribers. (If this doesn’t include you, click here. We only send emails that are worth your precious 15-90 seconds.) But for the sake of this post, here it is:
(*according to Like It Or Not Apparel)
1a LION : a person who has survived a "Like It Or Not" event, including but not limited to injury or illness; a traumatic event.
b : a person who identifies as a survivor
2a : a person who walks alongside a survivor, whether friend or family; especially in the recovery & rebuilding that follows survival. (see: indefinite length of time)
b : a supporter
3 : a person felt to resemble a lion (as in courage or ferocity)
UM, I DON’T WANT TO BE A LION
Yeah, no one does. But like it or not, here we are! Just as real-life lions live better in prides (groups), human LIONS do too!
Our brand is NOT just here for stroke survivors like my sister/co-founder Emily. Her stroke and the aftermath is our most visceral experience with “like it or not” situations. But we’ve met many brave and resilient people who have turned into LIONS by other means! We are intentionally inclusive in who we call LION. After all, “like it or not” events come in all forms.
Trauma (natural or human-induced).
Loss of a loved one (through death, changes in their health, or otherwise).
If you are rebuilding your life, or carry considerable scars (physical or otherwise!) from “shituations” that just happen as you're trying to be a normal human, YOU ARE A LION.
And just so we’re clear, you are a LION if you are a support or caregiver for the survivor in your life. Knowing how to provide care or plan for the future (let alone deal with the grief at the changes that have happened) is real tough. Your life will never be the same either, and it’s 100% OK (necessary?) to take care of yourself.
What unites us all as LIONS fundamentally comes down to this: awful things happen in life. When you survive it, you keep going. Not in a heroic, movie protagonist sort of way. The "post-survival" phase is usually where things actually get terrible. The scars stick with you, and probably everything has changed and it gets very complicated. And somehow, you wake up the next day. And the day after that.
If you have additional questions about this whole concept, we’d love to hear them and discuss.