At seventy-two years of age, I consider my life moderately successful. I’ve been lucky. I was born into a family that was safe, secure, and loving. We had plenty to eat. I attended good schools. I’ve been married for nearly fifty years. Our two grown daughters are happy, healthy, and independent. I enjoyed a satisfying career in education that also provided a decent retirement. I wrote and published a book.
Nonetheless, I understand that many opportunities I had are not available to others. We have little to say about the circumstances of our birth. Not all of us start at the same place on the ladder to success. Some start halfway to the top. Others on the ground. Some must climb out of a hole not of their own making. They may even need to build their own ladder.
So, it’s important not to judge someone else’s success by your ladder. Give everyone the grace to define success and grow in their own way at their own pace. And be kind.
One thought on “Defining success”
My life story mirrors yours. I come from a loving family. I’m a retired educator and have been married to my fabulous wife (also a career educator) for 36 years. I knew that I came from a good family, but it wasn’t until I taught that I had a proper awareness of the dysfunction that some of my students came from to realize how lucky I was. I’ve also written a book and consider my life a success. The main thing that’s important to me besides my family is to make some kind of contribution to the world.
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