This is not the SJ apology of « stay hungry, stay foolish » you know, that thing that every once in a while gets into our feeds.
When you have kids, one of the trickier aspects of raising them is to find the right balance between “let them fight for what they look for” Spartan way of living, and make their lives as easy as possible with the obvious risk of spoiling them to a point they have no notion of the value of things.
This is also – to me – a daily battle.
Being “not easily given” as a child (because of the obviously limited budget of a family of five on a regular employee salary, compensated by a great creativity, an incredibly lucky beach life and a preserved little town giving us much freedom) is probably the biggest not-considered-as-such blessing of my life.
Because what wasn’t lacking was the opportunity to set goals, as simple as “not asking pizza money anymore” or “get some liras for a camping on a budget somewhere” up to “let s go study abroad in Spain doing Erasmus” and compensate the shitty grant the EU have to the students.
It seems trivial to set up goals, right?
But so many people can’t answer to the question “what do you really want?” Simply because they are too busy with things happening TO them, to even pause and think. Also, some of us (not me, I’m afraid) never got a chance to actually THRIVE for something, because it was relatively easy to get, especially if money could buy it.
I call it the “generational leap”: the moment on a life of a family when your kids, for a combination of factors, will have a wider array of opportunities AND an easier way to access them, compared with the ones you had at their age. With that, a huge responsibility comes along: first and foremost, avoid to trade money with time (a temptation we all have) or love (easy to indulge as well).
Avoid the temptation to “it worked for me so will do for you” is also something I personally have struggles with, “because it’s better than the help I have got since no one at my age helped me with that”.
So what is an healthy hunger, how do I talk about it, how do I keep it for me and make it a thing for my kids, what I am hungry FOR and what is the right balance?
About this being a state of mind no one argues.
Do you need to be smart to be that type of hungry? Open question.
All I am saying is that I am so grateful to have the opportunity not to have been given a lot for granted, because that was my silent engine which brought me to a place I can tell the difference between the given and the fought for.
I leave it here for now, but suspect there is more to say …