A Perspective on “Having it All”

Marie Myung-Ok Lee is a novelist who lives with her husband and a 12-year-old disabled son. In a wonderful piece for The Atlantic, she describes how she copes with her situation and that she is happy with what she’s got:

When people ask, “How are you not exploding with stress with everything on your plate?”, I know they only mean it in the best, most compassionate way. And for those who have beautiful healthy children and gleaming new stoves, I do not discount their heartaches and worries and crises. But what bothers me is the implicit expectation: that people are waiting for our inevitable breakdown, a breast-beating howl against fate that is sure to come once we realize we’ll truly never “have it all” — because of our imperfect son.

For all the people who are puzzled by my seeming happiness, I’ll be glad to let them know my “secret.” I’m not in denial, I’m not on antidepressants, and I don’t live in a fantasy world. I have a wonderful husband and I am pursuing a career I’ve dreamed of since I was nine years old. I have a beautiful son, friends, and a working stove. I am not paraplegic. I have parents who, through luck and fate, had me here in the United States, and not in North Korea. I live in a time where my awful vision can be corrected with glasses. I am a college graduate. I am never hungry unless I choose to be.

Do I have enough? Resoundingly: yes. And I ask you to take a moment: I suspect you might, too.

A daily dose of perspective.

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(hat tip: Tim Ferriss)

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