A friend recently told me, referring to her friends in her upper-class neighborhood: "They have SO much, but, gosh, they are so, so unhappy." Some of them are doctors' wives, but all of them are very wealthy. I thought about this a lot. My friend suggested that they were possibly focused on accumulating material things for so long, and now have accumulated everything that they could ever imagine, that maybe now they don't know what to do with themselves.
Another friend told me a few months ago, after relocating for residency: "It's easy to be happy when your flock is happy." I love that!
And I am so happy when my family is happy. My husband just started a stressful rotation, but enjoys the rush of learning and the challenges of internal medicine. He doesn't enjoy (at all) the pure exhaustion due to lack of sleep (30 hour shifts every five days) but he has told me time and time again that he can't imagine doing anything else with his life. And my kids, I think, are just naturally happy. They remind me of the wonders around us and make learning and loving so much fun.
So, hopefully our family will continue to develop these habits of receiving enjoyment from our relationships and our love for learning and life.