Every life is a gift. In fact, it’s miraculous! Pushing through when it’s physically painful can be a big ask, but it’s possible. Adam Nugent and Kate Strong have a heartfelt and emotional conversation with David Osmond. Part of the second generation of Osmonds, David has been living with multiple sclerosis and the daily pain it brings. But there’s something incredibly special about this man, and his message of power and disposition throughout all of this will lift and inspire you. Find out more on today’s episode!
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David Osmond was practically born with a microphone in his hand. A talented performer, he always has several projects in the works. But behind the smile is debilitating pain due to multiple sclerosis. In this podcast excerpt, David describes a particularly dark and vulnerable moment and shares how he has learned to shift his mindset from pity to positivity.
AN: Your dad also has MS, and you grew up with him saying, “I might have MS, but MS doesn’t have me.” Then fast forward to your mid twenties, and you have it.
JO: It sounds crazy, but maybe it’s been one of the best things that’s ever happened to me because it’s allowed me to shift my perspective in a way that I could never have done otherwise. I have so much more compassion for others. I meet someone every single day that is going through something unthinkable, and I can’t imagine changing places with them. And I think, “Wow, what do I have to complain about?” I know what cards I’ve been dealt. I’m going to play this hand.
But I can feel sorry for myself. I remember being in my wheelchair and this was while I was dating Valerie [my future wife], and I was at my parents’ house for family gathering.
And I remember my brother Scott was on the floor with his 2-year-old son. They were doing this father-son wrestling match. And it was this loving, Hallmark moment. But as I looked over at Valerie, my smile diminished immediately because I’m looking at her and I’m thinking, “We want to have a family. We want to get married. And I’m in a wheelchair. I can’t even move my legs.”
I’m watching this moment with my brother with such jealousy. And I remember thinking, so clearly this burning question in my mind, “Why me? Why did this happen to me?” And it was a selfish thing to ask.
It was pity. It was darkness. It was anger. It was depression. I didn’t feel I had any hope. But I’m glad I had those moments. I’ve learned that I’m not allowed to ask the question “Why me?” unless I make sure that I ask the same question for every moment of happiness and joy that comes into my life. I look at my kids. I look at my beautiful wife. And I think, “Wow, why me?” And all of the sudden, my cup is overflowing. Everything looks different. There’s a silver lining in the disaster. There is beauty and light, even in the darkest places.
► You’ll also like: Episode 40: Habits of Happiness with Heidi Alldredge