The Investment Scientist

Why I Am Most Thankful

Posted on: November 30, 2011

At 2:24pm on 11/5/2011, my second son Caden arrived in the world. Upon seeing his face, my heart sank since there appeared to be a tiny piece of flesh dangling from his nose.

That night, my wife had a nightmare. Caden grew up and went to school. One day, he came home with a bloody face and cried: “Mommy, my classmates laughed at my nose so I tore it off my face.” My wife woke up crying.

All of a sudden, I could feel the pain of parents giving birth to a baby with a facial defect. We are very thankful, however, for the following reasons:

1) Caden was not born with a cleft lip. Every year, there are 160,000 babies born with cleft lips; they can’t even suckle. In many poor countries, they are left to die.

2) Caden was born in America, only 10 miles away from the National Children’s MedicalCenter where he will get the best medical treatment in the world.

3) Caden was born into a financially well-off family with great health insurance. Not every American family can claim that.

Upon pondering how lucky we are, our hearts went out to less fortunate parents, and we decided to donate to a nonprofit for children with cleft lips.

What’s the one thing you are most thankful about this year? Pause to think about it and if you like, share it with me. I promise you will have a happier thanksgiving.

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Michael Zhuang is principal of MZ Capital, a fee-only independent advisory firm based in Washington, DC.


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