Someone that I know recently lumped me into a group of "unsuccessful" people. "I am the only successful one," were the exact words used.
I find this to be an interesting judgement. Looking from one perspective, a sad and dark one, I guess you could say I have experienced some failures. I had a failed marriage. I was a stay-at-home mom (unless you count teaching ballet...doesn't really count, does it?). I went back to work and started over in my mid-thirties. Financially it is not easy to raise three boys who are bottomless pits and have extracurricular interests, but I manage. If these setbacks are evidence of failure, then I am a failure. And that is fine with me.
By my definition, I am more successful than the person making this judgement will ever hope to be. In the midst of hell, I managed to emerge from it with three well-adjusted children. They are healthy and happy. They are smart and talented. They are not without bumps and bruises, but I think that their trials will make them stonger, more empathetic men.
I have a great family. I have great friends. I am never without someone with whom to talk or do things. I am supported. I have people I can and have called for help in a crisis and they are there without queston.
I try to balance my children and my own life. I spend time with my children and make time when I can for myself (an impossible balancing act with which every parent struggles). I have worked hard on working my way back from a very dark time, and feel like I have found a place of happiness and fun.
The others who were also relegated to this unfortunate group are like me...not without struggle or hardships in life, but able to make a life and be happy with what they have. One is a working mom who, with her husband, supports her children. She struggles with guilt over leaving them, but makes the best of it and is happy. Another stays at home with her children but makes financial sacrifice to do so, and she is happy. And on and on.
My definition of success is obviously very different from The Rock's (as in dumb as a...or cold as a...). The Rock only judges success by financial achievement. To me that is cold and heartless. If The Rock would look a little closer, maybe the void of close relationships would be a glaring sign that that kind of success isn't really success at all.
I don't underdsand people who chose to judge others as "less than." That judgement in and of itself shows a lack of understanding of happiness. The "take others down to build yourself up" mentality. As with the ones who think I am going to hell (see previous blog post) I am in good company of others who are "unsuccessful."
I will happily take their company and go on our merry way. I chose not to be a rock, but a light and fluffy cloud floating happily through life.