Cultivate Theme

They say when you turn 40 you start to reflect on life and experience a bit of self-discovery.  They also say that 40 years old is a good time to assess current friendships and to rid oneself of any toxic energy. I am not quite sure who “they” are but, I do confess (keep it low), I am turning 40 this February and it appears as if I have some work to do! My wonderfully, shorter than me, husband threw a celebratory party in my honor this past weekend and packed our home with 65 of our nearest and dearest. As my eyes and body danced around the room that night I realized at that very instant that I was happy AND that even though at times things get stressful with the demands of work and being there for my family, I AM happy. AND, while happiness may not be an eternal state of mind for all of us, we must seize the moment when it arrives!!

I do wonder if the much talked about mother of two, Amy Chua, is happy. Or, is she so obsessed with her tough-love style of Chinese parenting that she forgets to enjoy life.  This Yale law professor’s memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother, reveals a tale of endless hours of forced piano and violin practice and no sleepovers for her two girls.  Amy even goes so far as to call her daughter “garbage” and further chastises her in saying, “stop being lazy, cowardly, self-indulgent and pathetic.”  Harsh! I get that Amy’s goal is to share with us “Americans” that we have the ability to shape our child’s life. But, shape it into perfection? Straight A’s? Performing at Carnegie Hall?  Nice, yes. Necessary for our, or our children’s, eternal happiness? No!


Do the best you can or as they (again, no clue who “they” are) say, “Make the most with what you’ve got.”  I’m not telling you to be an underachiever. I’m just admitting that life is hard. Parenting is hard. Marriage is hard.  And, turning 40 is hard too!  So, if it’s moments of happiness that allow us get ready for work each day, start a business venture, to go back to school, than I’m okay with that. You should be too.  No one is perfect. Not even Amy Chua.




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