Life is trial by fire….defining success


Recalling a time when my sister was going thru some challenging times with her son.  “I don’t know what to do” she said with much frustration in her voice.  “Well, have you looked in the instruction manual that he came with?” I asked!

Today I am so aware that life is trial by fire.  We can learn in school about history, we can even learn about sex, diseases, things we can do to make our lives better, easier, richer, but it can only teach us so much and the rest is up to us.     Life IS trial by fire and some embers are hotter than others.

Most of my life I felt like everyone ELSE had the answers and secret to life.  I was the one left out- the one left standing from the musical chair game of life.  This was evident by the amount of people I would seek counsel in with my problems.  Today I have a few confidants that I depend on.    Thankfully I have finally matured to a point where I can and do trust myself, my judgement, and approval seeking is at a minimum.  I now know, we are all here doing our best.  No human being came with an instruction manual or a Guide to the Secrets of Life.   True, our upbringing and breeding can and does play a big part of our knowledge and principals which may make our lives easier, richer… But take away the fancy cars, big houses, designer clothes, what is left?  We are all on the same playing field.  Things do not define success for me, growth does, being a good person does, helping others…

What is so interesting in this world we live in, and in this Country, Land of the Free, Home of the Brave… WE get to decide what defines our success, what we want to do with our lives.   For me, I am drawn to down to earth people who help others.  What turns my head is a cancer survivor GIVING of his precious time to a newly diagnosed cancer patient.  Assisting an older person with their groceries, or shoveling, whatever it may be without being asked.  A Veteran going to visit other veterans in a Nursing home.  A busy mother who takes in another child while his/her parent is recovering from illness.  A retired person who without being asked mows your lawn just because he knows it will make your life easier.   A person who reaches in his pocket and gives a few dollars to the homeless, regardless of what their situation is or was.

Yes, life IS trial by fire.  Sometimes we get it “right” immediately, other times we may struggle with it.   The trick, I have found, is to keep your eyes and head pointed in your own direction, to your own mirror, reflecting what is important to YOU not anyone else.  Then and only then will you start to feel true success.  If you are basing your success compared to someone elses accomplishments or lack thereof,  you could very well be stripping yourself of your own uniqueness, beauty and purpose.

Today I’m going to let others live their lives, define their success(es) and I shall do the same of myself….


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