Taking punches with grace

Alicia Kan:

Nobody tells you that adulthood is all about taking punches with grace.

This idea has really sunk in lately, as I’ve reached an age that puts me undeniably into my mid-thirties.1 The past two years also dealt more punches than expected for our family and far too many friends.

Adulthood will always commingle its joys and sorrows. The birth of your son may get poignantly juxtaposed with the sudden death of your mother. Or a writing credit you’ve long awaited might be published mere days after an internet activist you’ve long admired passed away prematurely.

Becoming an adult brings added freedoms, but they’re tempered with increased responsibilities. Adulthood means being the person who handles life’s inevitable setbacks and challenges. It means finding a way to remain happy, or at least functional, no matter what hits the proverbial fan.

This path to happiness can feel impossibly out of reach. If so, you could be suffering from depression. Please find the strength to discuss these feelings with a doctor, loved one, or crisis hotline.


  1. Taking punches with grace might be what life is about for everyone, not just adults. Or perhaps the more accurate caveat is that some kids have adulthood thrust upon them too soon.