Sheryl Sandberg‘s commencement address at UC Berkeley is a gift to the world. Her hard-learned lessons following the sudden death of her husband offer all of us things to think about for when we face adversity. “Lessons about hope, strength, and the light within us that will not be extinguished.” Sandberg assures the graduates that they will almost certainly face adversity at some point in their lives:
The question is not if some these things will happen to you. They will. …I want to talk about what happens next. About the things you can do to overcome adversity, no matter what form it takes or when it hits you. …It is the hard days — the times that challenge you to your very core — that will determine who you are. You will be defined not just by what you achieve, but by how you survive.
Since our desire in creating Done Darkness was to examine stories about surviving depression, Sandberg’s talk emphasizing “hope, strength and the light within us that will not be extinguished” resonates with us. Please, please, read her speech. She reminds us all that we “are not born with a fixed amount of resilience. Like a muscle, you can build it up, draw on it when you need it.” Resilience leads to perseverance, leads to stomping through and out of the darkness.