I believe in luck, providence, good fortune.
Goodness knows life likes to throw the random our way, enough to ensure we’re kept on our toes.
So naturally I also believe in misfortune, bad luck and Life’s uncanny ability to knock us when we’re down.
Each of us I’m sure, could rattle off a series of events throughout the course of our unique lives, which demonstrates the all too familiar effect fortune (in both its forms) has played.
He fled his country seeking asylum, only to be saved by Thai pirates and become Australia’s ‘Happiest Refugee’ (Anh Do).
She was shot in the face, yet went on to become a spokesperson for young women the world over (Malala Yousafzai).
While we may not think our lives are as extraordinary as these examples, I’m inclined to think that we all face relative episodes of luck and misfortune no less significant to our relative lives.
What intrigues me most, is why some people seem more prone to draw strength from these events of misfortune and take something positive from them?
What makes these ‘glass half-full’ humans, see the bleakness of what life can offer up and yet choose to move onward and upward?
A life less than fortunate
I recently came across a copy of A.B Facey’s autobiography ‘A Fortunate Life’. It’s always been one of those books I knew I should read, but just never got round to reading it.
(Ah, to have a parallel life devoted purely to reading. That would be fortunate indeed)
Reading through the first few pages it’s glaringly obvious that this guy had a damn rough start to life; parentless at 2, forced to find a job a 8, working under horrific conditions, sent off to fight in WWI which saw the loss of his two brothers.
His own son years later was also killed in WWII. You could say misfortune unfairly plagued this guy from birth.
Granted, he lived during what some would call ‘hard-times’ but this only makes his determination and grace at calling his life ‘fortunate’, all the more remarkable.
‘Many people had little feeling or sympathy for those in need’ A.B Facey.
Despite the ‘bad luck’ that freakishly followed Facey about, he seems to have consistently found strength and purpose in his life.
He taught himself to read, made a success of his farming business, was happily married with seven children and of course later in life at the ripe old age of 87, he became a household name through the publication of his life story ‘A Fortunate Life’ (That’s flipping the bird at Luck right there!).
We might unfairly suffer through a family tragedy, or find frustration with the unfair demands placed on us in our jobs, relationships even and Luck may indeed seem to play the greater hand at times.
That is a truth no one can deny us of, but I think we have the option to choose the way we view these episode of ‘misfortune’ and in turn direct the way we deal with them.
It’s about how bad you want it; Life…. to be more than a ‘series of unfortunate events’, that makes the difference.
A.B Facey’s autobiography (among many others), is a fitting reminder to us all that despite our hardships, it is more about about perspective and less about luck.