Like many families, I have relatives who came to America around the time when Woodrow Wilson was president in the early 1900s. My grandparents (on both sides) came from overseas by ship to live a dream in a place that they had never seen. When they arrived to our shores, they couldn’t speak the language, had no money, no place to live, and didn’t know very many people. Not to mention that the Internet wouldn’t be invented for another 70 years. They also didn’t believe in taking one penny from the government. But instead, they worked hard, took jobs where they could find them and raised a family in the middle of the depression. My grandparents showed by their own actions that you can accomplish anything. Their goal was to make a better life for their children in the land of opportunity.
Wikipedia describes work-ethic as a set of values based on hard work and diligence. It is also a belief in the moral benefit of work and its ability to enhance character. My grandparents picture should appear next to that definition.
I never met either of my grandfathers. They past away before I was born. But I know them from the stories that my parents and relatives have told me. My grandparents believed that this is a great country. And that there is more opportunity to succeed in the United States than anywhere else in the world. I think about them now and how they would react to the current economic situation. My guess is that they would say that there is opportunity even in the worst of times. It just depends on how bad you want it and how hard you’re willing to work for it.
I am inspired by their legacy and I hope to pass their can-do attitude on to my own children. So, what’s the problem? The world just gave you lemons? Get inspired. Make something from nothing. Create a better life for you and your family. Like your great-grandparents before you, it’s time to make lemonade.