By Tino Mantella
TLG President & CEO
Everyone faces challenges in their lives. They are real and they can be crippling. For the lucky ones, like myself, we understand that our cataclysmic events are actually just tiny tremors in the big scheme of things. For me, it’s helpful to see how individuals with real challenges have pulled themselves up from their bootstraps to overcome obstacles that most of us would see as insurmountable.
To that end, I recently heard a story on the news about Paul Alexander. Paul contracted polio in 1952 and since the age of six has spent many hours of his life in an iron lung. I was inspired by Alexander’s will to never give up and live a fulfilling life. Paul overcame the odds and went on to become a successful lawyer. “I wanted to accomplish the things I was told I couldn’t accomplish and to achieve the dreams I dreamed,” said Paul. Rather than relay more of the story here I invite you to read this comprehensive article that was published in the Smithsonian in November of 2021.
Carrying your Burdens
I am not naïve. There are real issues out there….wars, plagues, mental health, and so on. The weight of a burden can be just too much for a person to bear. Chances are, someone is carrying a burden even heavier than our own. I have been inspired by the countless stories, like Paul’s, that have shown that determination and belief in oneself can enable many to overcome obstacles in life.
“If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.” – Regina Brett
Chances are that our situations are not as bad as someone else’s. If you were offered someone else’s burden, you might just keep yours. If that person overcame it, we can too!