Part of a longer pondering by Sarah Hoyt:
And you grow a bit more and realize your dad gave up his dream of becoming an artist for a career that he didn’t like because he had a family to support. And you realize how well your mom does what she does considering what she battles every day.
And you start seeing all the times they didn’t tell you they were too tight on money, but gave you the price of a movie, because they wanted you to be happy. And all the times they went without something near-essential so you could have something nice.
And then, somewhere along the line, you realize that all the grace and favors received come with an obligation. That it’s up to you to do something nice for THEM, to bring unexpected joy to their lives, because they work so hard and they love you. And the same with your friends. Instead of worrying that you are having such a hard time, you notice your friend broke with her boyfriend and is trying to be brave, but depressed, and you blow all the money you made that month on tutoring to take her out to a movie about dance and dinner and to be silly and walk in the rain like you did when you were little.
Congratulations. You’ve found the key to adulthood and arguably to happiness — when you stop obsessing over your own wrongs and difficulties and start trying to make others’ lives easier.