I’ve made some changes that will help my financial situation, even if only moderately. John Steinbeck wrote in America and Americans: “I guess the trouble was that we didn’t have any self-admitted proletarians. Everyone was a temporarily embarrassed capitalist.” Well, who wants to be the proletariat? I’d rather have the problems of the wealthy than the problems of the impoverished. The chances of that happening, while not impossible, get slimmer with each passing year. Mostly, I’d like to be comfortable, and not have to choose paying utilities vs. eating.
Richard Branson, the entrepreneur extraordinaire was asked at what financial level he felt successful, and his alleged reply was: ‘fifty million’. I’d feel successful if I still had fifty dollars in my account at the end of a month! Well, maybe not successful, but certainly less stressed out.
I can also use my local food bank once a month – as long as there’s food – and if worse keeps going to worst, many of my bills will be moot because I’ll be homeless (even though friends have offered their couch if it comes to that)! I have the library I can connect to the internet with, and I can store stuff with various friends. At least it’s just me now. I know my poverty embarrasses my son, but I’m doing the best I can, for me. And it’s not like I’m not doing anything! I am working – but it’s a few jobs that are still only part-time, and not enough to afford much more than basics, and I’m also trying to build a life that I want to be in. My son would like me to stay alive for as long as that’s possible, and that’s my commitment to him, whether or not I want to.
I have to remember that I was a success for a long chunk of time. I raised a son, who is a good human being. He had way more than I ever had, and that’s how it should be. He’s in college, and while I can’t help him financially, he’s getting scholarships, and taking out loans, and at least he’s earning a degree which I hope will help him pay back all his loans quickly.
In the meantime, I have my band, and the rest of the world goes away when I sing – which is one of those gifts I wouldn’t trade for more money but no solace.
© seekingsearchingmeaning (aka Hermionejh) and Life On Earth’s Blog, 2010 – infinity.