Life has ticked on quite nicely and there’s been very little to consider lately. But here’s a thing.
My fellow students puzzle me.
Admittedly I am several years older than them, but they vary in age from 19-26 and they all puzzle me. I guess my outlook on life is rather different. But I think it always has been – even when I was in that age bracket, the idea of going out (or staying in) purposefully to get drunk and/or high just didn’t really appeal. And this isn’t to say I haven’t done either or that in the right context being a bit tipsy isn’t actually lots of fun, but these guys have such dedication to the cause. To the point of spending money on alcohol etc that really, ideally would be spent elsewhere.
And this confuses me too, but then even as a child I diligently saved up my pocket money 50p at a time so that I would have a decent amount to spend on our annual holiday (I thought that £20 was riches beyond my wildest dreams), whereas my sister would inevitably spend hers on things she wanted and have significantly less to spend on holiday. I’m not sure to this day whether my motivation was entirely innocent, either – I loved having more money than her and lording it over her. I certainly think this sowed a seed of being quite happy to postpone enjoyment, and I rarely feel the need for the instant gratification offered by large amounts of intoxicating substances, but for better or for worse, who knows?
The flipside of this attitude is that I now find it quite difficult to spend money frivolously and usually agonise over any spend over about £5 (well, any that isn’t already budgeted for). Husby tells me that money is for spending and that I can’t take it with me – that one should work to live, not the other way around. And yet I struggle. Hugely. I feel the need to justify large spends – especially on shoes. I worry that there were better places to use the money, and certainly more worthy causes than me (particularly as I already have lots of lovely shoes and there is no need for yet another pair). I worry that my money could be put to better use helping someone who needs it. I worry that it is my duty as someone who is arguably in the 4% richest of the world’s population to support those who have less. And then I worry that I don’t worry enough about people whose situations are truly desperate. And then I worry that if I worry about those few I have to worry about everyone.
And then my head explodes and I can no longer justify shoes. Or a new clothe. Or a meal out. Or a magazine. And it does bother my poor Husby, I think. In a way it bothers me, too.
But what if I didn’t worry?