Overcoming

I fancy myself somewhat of a history buff. I’m addicted to YouTube channels about history and biographies, I’m nearly always reading a book about a famous person. Right now it’s a book on the life of Elenor Roosevelt.

No matter which famous person I read about, I am struck by one thing, the incredible adversity so many overcame. Even Eleanor with all her privilege had a horrible childhood, was mocked by her mother and saw her father die of alcoholism with much more adversity in her adult life.

Harry Truman was a failure in business. U.S, Grant too was a failure more than once. The list goes on.

But in each case these individuals who now have books written about their lives overcame whatever they faced, they kept going, they picked up the broken dreams and started over sometimes multiple times.

I guess that is what makes them different, why we remember them. But it’s not just people who have books written about them, there are millions of average people who may not be famous, but who have overcome obstacles that would have stopped many of us.

Knowing all this frustrates me when I read and hear the rhetoric of the day moaning about student loans, living paycheck to paycheck, the need for more child tax credits, the fairness of taking more from others and all the rest.

No, I’m not saying people should suffer or walk through a trial by fire, but I am saying individuals need to take responsibility for their life decisions and choices, need to stop feeling entitled or envious of the success of others fairly gained, to accept and then find ways to overcome their failures.

We are not victims, past generations have had it far worse than we do today and I bet it’s not hard to find someone who faced and overcame adversity and obstacles far greater than ourselves.

4 comments

  1. Amazed at how selfish you are Dick. Suprised that you don’t fully appreciate why you should work for 50+ years so that Sandy Cortez, Bernie Sanders and Pocahontas could take it away from you and your family to buy votes when giving it to others who don’t seem all that enthusiastic about work, responsibility, overcoming adversity.

    Same for the 13 who died in Afghanistan a couple of weeks ago – put in an untenable, indefensible position so Joe Biden and others could give speeches yesterday (or for those too embarrased to speak, release pronouncements from on high) on how they ended a “forever” war. They say one man’s trash is another’s treasure. Always amazed how one guy’s effort to end the war is confirmed to be a surrender by the opposition. .

    My minister’s sermon today encouraged us to recognize good when we see it, and evil as well … to recognize service to others, including the ultimate sacrifice.

    Best I heard / saw this weekend was in the WSJ – Remember Todd Beamer of United 93 by Mene Ukueberuwa. “… Before ending his call with Ms. Jefferson, Beamer asked, “Would you do one last thing for me?”
    “Yes. What is it?” she answered. “Would you pray with me?” They said the Lord’s Prayer together in full, and other passengers joined in. Beamer then recited Psalm 23, concluding, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I will fear no evil, for thou art with me.” Immediately after, he turned to his co-conspirators and asked, “Are you guys ready? OK, let’s roll.” It’s a life and death that merit celebration. Amid the observances on this 20th anniversary, take a moment to remember Todd Beamer. …”

    Be thankful for Todd Beamer and others. Keep that in mind now 20 years later and for the next 20 years as well.

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  2. I look at those who came to this country with noting but the clothes on their backs. They worked hard and struggled through terrible conditions and poverty but they made a life for themselves. They were tough and resembled our parents and grand parent’s. And as often been said, they were THANKFUL for everything they had.

    Today. It is I WANT or they should provide. No backbone or pride in oneself.

    Make a positive difference in someone’s life today! Bill Mitchell

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    1. And many faced hate and discrimination once they got here. And they made it up the later with virtually no public assistance. My great, great grandfather came here from Ireland after fighting in Crimean War and joined the Union Army in the Civil War. Unlike many today the overwhelming desire was to become Americans not just to be in America. My wife’s grandparent wouldn’t even allow their children born here to learn Italian (a mistake, but that’s how they felt).

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