Acceptance is also a Choice

[UPDATE 31 Dec 06: I’ve since learned that “Hearing Impaired” is not a preferred term. I should use “Deaf” or “Hard of Hearing”. Thanks.]

In my view, those who cope well in life tend to adopt a philosophy that they are comfortable with.

Here’s Joseph, who blogged about his hearing-impairment being deaf. Near the end of his post, he asked — perhaps rhetorically — whether he has a choice in being deaf. It’s clear to me he has made a conscious choice to accept what he can control and what he cannot.

Getting something like a Cochlear Implant, after weighing the risks, is a conscious choice. Accepting that one has to make do with a physical disability as best as one can — that’s a conscious choice. Blaming everything on “fate” and being angry with the world is also a choice, arguably not made consciously perhaps (Joseph didn’t come across as having taken that last position).

“Acceptance is also a choice”, as I inferred in my “I Am Singaporean” podcast. When I read Joseph’s (who is hearing-impaired) blog post, two words came to mind: “Pragmatic Acceptance”. It may seem like I’m trying to be a smart-aleck in choosing such a term; “acceptance is acceptance” right?

Well, I think there’s “acceptance” (as in saying “I’m not even going to try since I can’t change things”) and there’s “acceptance” (as in, “I know I can’t change things right now but I’ll keep a look out for tomorrow”).

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One thought on “Acceptance is also a Choice

  1. That’s a nice story there. I can empathise with deafness because my mum has been deaf in one ear ever since she was 18. What happened was an accident where she accidentally poked her ear drums. However, I guess total deafness (or blindness) is an even more scary affliction.

    I am personally heartened by the fact that Theresa Goh is doing so well in swimming despite being a paraplegic. It shows that if we accept ourselves for who we are and not be embittered about our lot in life, we can achieve great things for ourselves. However, even if we don’t make a huge mark, we need not fret so long as we try our best in whatever we do and can live lives without regret.

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