It's almost March, which means all the St. Patrick's stuff has started to show up on store shelves (side note: when did St. Patrick's Day become an actual holiday?). This got me thinking about luck.
"You're so lucky." If you live on this planet, those words have probably been uttered to you before in regard to something you have or have achieved. Those words really make me crazy. And while I know that people never say them with ill-intent, it's always a shock to my system to hear those words.
Luck: (noun) success or failure apparently brought about by chance rather than one's own actions.
I'm not sure about you, but I don't feel like most of the things in my life came about by chance. Aside from an initial chance encounter, most of the things in my life have come about through hard work and sacrifice.
"You are so lucky to be a stay-at-home mom." I would venture to say that this has nothing to do with luck and everything to do with a series of decisions I made during my life, including the decision to marry a husband who recognized the importance of having a parent stay home with young children if it was feasible.
"You are so lucky to have a solid marriage." Ummm, marriage is hard work. Luck stopped the day my husband and I crossed paths in our university's student center. Every day thereafter has been the product of choices made by each of us to keep our relationship thriving. Speaking of...
"You are so lucky to have landed such an incredible man." Why yes, my husband is pretty freaking incredible. I'd like to think I am too. And I'd like to think that, again, luck had nothing to do with me landing him. My stellar personality and ridiculously good looks (just kidding haha) must have had nothing to do with it, right? But seriously, did I have nothing to do with it? Saying this implies that he basically picked me out of a hat. And considering we dated twice, I'd say that most certainly wasn't the case.
"You are so lucky to have your little boy." To this I'd say, read about our struggle with infertility. Has God blessed me immensely with this little boy of mine? YES. Am I grateful to have him wake up every morning? Yes. Did he come to us by pure chance and luck? NO.
"Your husband is so lucky to have the job he has." I think this one may bother me most of all, and I know I have spoken to many friends who feel this way as well. My husband works his butt off - sometimes at the expense of his own well-being. His success can be attributed to any number of factors, but luck is certainly not one of them. And his success also has just a tiny bit to do with his having a supportive wife at home.
Anyway, I'm pretty sure that there is not a whole lot that anyone in this life has that can be attributed solely to luck. At some point along the way, a decision was made about something or other that led to whatever this person has or does not have. And I'm going to say I'm fairly certain luck has nothing to do with it.
So next time you're about to tell someone how lucky they are, don't. Some alternatives: "You're so fortunate," or "You've been blessed" (as cliched as that may be, it's still less insulting than "you're lucky."
Just keeping it real.