The other day I brought up a question. I said to each kid, "If you had to define yourself as a pessimist or an optimist, which would it be?" I already suspected what their answers would be but kept quiet. I was dead on right too. Coryn said optimist; both Nicole and Caspian said pessimist. I had already seen this trend in them and thought it was time to discuss it. It actually led to a fascinating conversation which I think we all enjoyed and learned from. Since depression tends to run in our family (Joseph and some of his relatives, my mother), it is a topic we take seriously.
Clearly, we all accept that no one is a 100 percent optimist or pessimist--we all have moments of both. I remember my parents--mom was an optimist, dad was a pessimist. I always knew when I shared news with them that they would have vastly different responses. Dad was always seeing the possibility of trouble and complications, while Mom was always thinking of possibilities and adventures. Watching my kids, I could see those traits reflecting back to me and I was worried. Nicole was just called back into work at an old job and what I thought she would see as a perfect opportunity, she saw with dread. We talked about it and then the whole family discussed it and now a couple of us are listening to positive affirmations/positive outlook CDs at night.
I consider myself a definite optimist. I greet each day with gratitude and I try always to look at each situation in the most positive light possible. I falter, for sure, but I try hard to remember that life is precious and so limited. I am just so glad that I get to share it with these wonderful people--pessimists and otherwise. :)