I Won’t Back Down #146 

I won't back down

I Won’t Back Down


It’s time to dance and do some fancy two steps this time around. 


There came a time when I learned that I needed to stand in my place and do what comes next. 

Even if the two steps took me through a bright puddle or two. 


How long ago was that? 

I could say I won’t back down from the next group of things.

Perhaps it was about the time that I realized I could say I won’t back down from the next group of things coming. 


Now, are you wondering when that began?


Let’s begin with a few things and see if there is something that comes in the dance step for you. 


When I was in the early years of grade school, I had a teacher that taught me how to do three things. 


  • Write in cursive.
  • Trust that there was more coming in life. 
  • How to ride on a city bus to see grand things outside our neighborhood. 


Now, those may not seem like big deals to you and yet let’s take a closer look. 




I was not great at writing in cursive. 



The letters L, Q and S were a nightmare for me. 

There were standards posted all around the room that stood like sentinels all year long. 


I can tell you I learned that I was not going to back down with this new learning style even when my hand grew tired. 


My fingers were perplexed and had no idea how to create a flair on the end of each letter. 


Did I give a go each week? Sure, and this teacher smiled with her bun on top of her head. 


Bopping to a beat of persistence and delight when the sentence was attempted.


Next, this teacher taught me that there was more coming in life. 


There were times that I could see what was in front of me. This teacher told stories that broadened my view and helped me to trust that more was coming. 


How was that possible? 

Magically in a room full of young people who knew something and a few things yet nothing. 


A calm smile brought a trust amongst the chaos. 


I believed her. 


Great things have come, and this teacher was part of it. 

How did she know that I was one who would not back down?

How did she know that I was one who would not back down from the moments that were coming? 

That is an amazing gift she brought to her class. 


Think about the third piece with me. 

Teaching in a class is one thing. 

Going into the wilds with children on a city bus is another set of wonders all together. 


Would you do this? This teacher did it with a few of us. 


She gathered us at the school then walked us to the bus stop down the lane. 


Can you feel the moment coming? 


We got onto the bus and rode the public transportation with our teacher into the city. 


What freedom and joy there was that day! 


Can I tell you how it came together on the adult side? Absolutely not.


Do I need to know that piece? Not at all. 

What I do know is that from then on, I thought I could do most anything. 


With learning and trusting others who were there to help me, like this teacher.

Able to not back down from the next adventure.

I was able to move along, able to not back down from the next adventure, being a young child that grew and learned that the dance would change. 


It did change and the music continued to bring more rhythms for me. 


This includes a song that has these words from Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers exactly. His title has been a mantra for me since I ventured into the world away from teachers in school. 


I won’t back down as I learned other ways to communicate. 


Yes, I still work on my cursive occasionally with a few more ways to get my point across. 


I also venture into other parts of my community and country while learning new transportation systems as a way to get around. 


That happened on a recent trip as we were bopping around a city. 


We followed maps and asked questions from trusted people along the way. 

Jumped across a few puddles after the rain and watched for light to glisten like this view. 


Going up and down escalators even as we realized that we needed to go the other direction. 


That took us a moment to hop off and on then grin as we scooted along to get into the city. 

Sometimes it comes with tough lessons that pop and bop into life.

Now, there is more learning to happen and sometimes it comes with tough lessons that pop and bop into my life. 


How does that still happen, my friends? 

Life has a way of showing me where I get to be going next with those who’d like to hop on and grin. It is also life that shows me that it is going to bop me around once in a while. 


I get to read the map and hop onto a new direction while knowing that I won’t back down.

Trusting that there are more great things coming. 


That’s part of what my teacher taught me many years ago. 


Her smile and bopping bun created her own rhythm while teaching me to find mine. 


I also learned it from our son who found his way, trusting what was happening, while creating a space in the world that may not have looked like anyone else. 


Being reminded that I won’t back down by simple things all around like buses, the folded books and music every day continue to be key for me.


What rhythms have come to you? 


Let’s think about the puddles we can jump to create a few bright moments knowing we won’t back down together.

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  1. Margene Morris on June 25, 2024 at 1:56 pm

    As always right on point for me….you are the best. Love your writing and love you!

    • Julia Pearce on June 27, 2024 at 1:59 am

      One word at a time with you is how we can keep going, my friend!

  2. Mom on June 25, 2024 at 3:44 pm

    Love this! What grade? Which teacher ???!!!

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