On paper, we are poor. Actually, beyond poor. And by paper, I mean all quantifiable measurements like the Federal poverty guidelines, assets versus debt ratio, last year’s tax returns, and the government which provides our family of 6 with Medicaid health benefits and food stamps.
Every time I find the difference between what we have, and what we need to physically provide for our family, the resulting negative numbers feed my 7th fear of being poor forever.
Four years ago, we were rich on paper. Our gross household income was among the top 10% of Americans. My husband was the sole breadwinner, and I stayed home full time with our triplets, and newborn. We had a spacious new home, filled with expensive things, and disposable income to pay for new clothes, gifts, and dinners at restaurants. I didn’t think we were rich. I thought we were poor.
There was a stark difference in my perception versus reality. Though our financial situation has drastically shifted over the past few years. I continue to ask myself the same questions.
How much is enough? How much will it take to be satisfied with what I have? If I continue to feed The Want, why is it never satisfied?
Personal fulfillment is peppered with If – Then conditional statements.
If we get that next bonus check Then, I’ll be more relaxed.
If we could afford to give our children _____ like ____ give their kids, Then, I’ll be happy.
If I could…If she could… If he could…
Then, will it be enough?
When I quantify my personal peace and happiness with false logic, it is bound to leave me feeling empty. True peace is not anchored to physical objects, achievement, or other people. It comes from within.
Nothing is never enough.
Something is always enough.
When I say that I’m afraid of being poor forever, it’s only part of the truth. I am afraid of living with abundance, again, and not feeling like I have enough. I am afraid of The Want consuming me and my personal peace. I desire to feel rich regardless of my financial status on paper. I want to believe that who I am and what I have are enough.
I look forward ton a future when I am able to contribute to social services instead of being an end user. I will welcome the freedom from remarks of conveyor-belt-assessing strangers about which items I purchase with my food stamp card.
I anticipate days when I’m not calculating which utility bill will need to wait based upon the chronological order disconnect dates.I’m not going to waste time waiting until Then to be grateful or at peace. I am working today on appreciating that what I have is enough. I am rich. I have enough. I am enough.
My happiness is not determined by my possessions being greater than, less than or equal to yours.
My wealth is in recognizing that the ability to find peace and joy in life can only be determined by me.
Genealogy Jen’s Challenge of the Week – Gratitude comes from giving. Spend at least one hour this week serving someone in need.
Bonus points- Choose someone who doesn’t look like a hot mess, because they’re pulled together on the outside. Those people probably need your help more. True story.