October 14, 2008
So I had a conversation with my kinda cousin, Cathy, today. See she was apparently uninvited, but really never was formally invited, we just assumed she'd be coming to dinner today. She was probably reading too much into it and some how it turned into - my brother helps financially so I'm a loser. What she meant by this was that she isn't as successful as her brother. Now Michael is a wonderful person and I really don't think he feels that way. I mean he is very successful, he has a fantastic job, he speaks Japanese (fluently), lives in San Jose (one of the most expensive places to live in the country), is obviously very educated, and doesn't really want for anything, he's funny, smart, kind, and very loved - so yes he would be considered successful. But, are these qualities any more important than the fact that he has a wonderful life partner, he's funny, kind, and loving. So, what really makes someone successful? Is it all about money or is it about life? Cat is a college graduate, has a good job at FedEx, 3 wonderful kids, a fiance who loves her, she has been a "big sister" to me and at least 2 others, she's a kind friend, funny, and smart. Does it really matter that her brother helps her afford the house she is in? She was in the house first because of a divorce, then because her mother needed help, and now she and her fiance are going to try to buy the house from her brother...does that make her a failure? My brother is very successful in his work, but moves around a lot and is lonely. Does the fact that he makes more money than me make him more successful? I have a good job, a new car, I'm thinking about buying the condo I'm in, I have great friends and a wonderful family. I also have a college degree and am looking at going to more school. So what is the real measure of success? Money doesn't make a person successful - as an anonymous person once said, "To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; to leave the world a little better; whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is the meaning of success."