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German proverbs 4: Resilience


Da musst du durch als Lurch wenn du Frosch werden willst.


You have to stick it out as amphibian if you want to become a frog.
You have to stick it out as tadpole if you want to become a frog.


Situations that are uncomfortable but necessary:

  • I really don’t feel like going to school.
  • Harvesting berries is boring.
  • This exercise is too exhausting.
  • I don’t want to apologize this is so embarrassing, I really don’t want to face it.
  • My legs hurt cycling, my bike it too heavy.

Niece in her terrible two gets an almighty temper tantrum during holiday on the seaside because her feet got wet. Rewind ten minutes: wet feet were totally fun when splashing around the Baltic, but walking back to our accommodation was boring, so wet feet suddenly became cause for Glasgow Pain Scale 10 suffering. The response to this would be that she had to see this through as tadpole if she would like to be a frog. Mind you the response is sometimes: But I don’t want to be a frog!

For me this proverb was about resilience and becoming: it is not about becoming a frog, after all not everyone wants to be a frog, but about becoming who you want to be. It was about learning that discomfort is part of life and that without it goals won’t be reached. There would be no jam without the berries, no fun cycling to places, no learning to take responsibility for your actions, no degree without school. We are in a process of becoming all our life, and pain or discomfort are inevitably part of this process. It’s more fun though with quirky proverbs that make you laugh about yourself once in a while.

Categories: Reflections

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Nathalie Sheridan

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