Today’s word: isshoukenmei
The dictionary defines this word as “very hard; with utmost effort; with all one’s might.” It usually refers to putting the effort into something longterm, such as studying or working, and to my mind, with a certain degree of enthusiasm. I often heard, when I was being described to others, that I was isshoukenmei kurarinetto o fuite iru (diligently playing the clarinet).
Whenever I would express my frustrations to my mom about things going on in my life, she would always say (in English) “try harder.” I’m never quite sure what she means by that. Try harder not to be frustrated? Try harder to do something different? It’s the way she says it, with a little leaning towards me for emphasis, that makes the phrase so endearing to me: try harder. I’d like to think she means that I should, with all my might, not get so worked up about things.
Happy Birthday, mom. I’m doing well, and I’m trying harder.