Proverb – Mexico

Spanish proverb

“A pan duro, diente agudo”

“To hard bread, acute tooth”

“Strong bread, makes sharp teeth”

Shannon was told this proverb by her Spanish nanny when she was about twelve years old. Shannon remembers being told this when she was going through an especially rough time in her life and was having trouble keeping up in school and staying strong. So one day, her nanny pulled her aside and told her this proverb that she had learned from her hometown in Mexico. Her nanny explained that it is experiences such as this one that allow us to grow as a person and become stronger and wiser.

Shannon explained to me that she has always held this proverb dear to her heart and it is one of the reasons she is such a strong person. Now whenever Shannon hits a rough spot in her life, she remembers that no matter how hard it may get, it cannot destroy her and in the end she will come out of the experience stronger and wiser and will have learned a valuable lesson. She explained to me that this proverb has helped her not to break down so easily when in a bind or when under pressure. She also believes that her nanny believes so strongly in this Spanish proverb because her family lived through a lot of pain and strife and if this one proverb was able to help lift their spirits then it must be strong and thus Shannon has always repeated it to others.

While I agree that some events can make you stronger, I believe more that sometimes-hard events might teach you something but not necessarily make you stronger. I believe they make you smarter but not necessarily stronger. I have been in many a situation where a tough situation has broken me down emotionally and physically and I have gotten sick or weak or over exhausted and while I do always make it out fine in the end, I usually come out of it smarter but I have never felt like a stronger person. However, I feel that it is important sometimes to note that the proverb might affect people differently depending on their personality. While I tend to like to work out things rationally and in an educated way without really worrying about whether or not my feelings get hurt, Shannon clearly uses this proverb to strengthen herself and not allow anything to stand in her way and that is what makes this proverb so powerful.