I woke from a nap this evening. I thought I would make myself an espresso, but then I remembered there is a good, local coffee shop not far from me that has live music on Friday and Saturday evenings. I brushed my teeth and changed my clothes and headed out.
I was sitting there listening to the music. For some reason I thought about my son that just started wearing glasses (at age 14). I thought about how good his glasses looked, and it reminded me of the nasty, dorky glasses my mother always got me every year while I was growing up. She was so against contacts, saying that my eyes were still growing. I don’t know if she meant growing… as in I was growing… so therefore my eyes must be growing is size (a bullshit excuse)… or if she meant my prescription was always changing… slight changes from year to year… for the worse of course (a semi-reasonable excuse). I don’t know what she meant, so I don’t know how much I should resent her for that.
I hated those glasses. Then I thought about how it has been almost two years since I had laser surgery on my eyes… and I now have about 20/20 vision (20/20 in the right, 20/25 in the left). I was really appreciating what I have. To an outsider it might seem like I have very little. I am separated from my wife for two years, I have a small apartment I can barely afford, and I have very little materialist things to show for being 48.
None of that matters.
I am very appreciative of where I am in life. I am happier now than I think I have ever been. I don’t even know where my oppressive/abusive mother lives, and I have left all the bad from my childhood behind. The only things from my youth that I keep hold of are the very close friends I have maintained over the last 26 years since moving away from New York. (This means you: Chip, Carol, Kevin & Tom.)
Yes… this is getting a little philosophical. I can’t help it. I sat in that coffee shop without a worry in the world. I really do have a level of contentment that wraps me in a blank… so to speak. This is happiness. I don’t need a woman in my life to be happy, so when a woman comes into my live… I can only be more happy. If or when that happens, I can appreciate a woman more than I could otherwise.
Right now… I can say that I can’t complain about anything. Yes, I make more money now than I ever have… and have never felt poorer… financially. It does not matter. You make do with what you have. If you can’t be happy with what you have then what is the point of having more money to buy more stuff. So… yes… I would like to have more money. Add to that I just lost one alternative income stream, and a second potential source of income went out the window as well. These would have helped me get out of debt, but it does not matter.
My life itself is nearly perfect. I very much enjoy the time I get with my sons. Although that time is not as much as I would prefer… almost every moment of it is of a higher quality then it was when we all lived together. Quality over quantity in time is an amazing feeling when it comes to the relationship I have with my sons.
So… I am poor, but eventually that will not be the case. Money it not everything.
I have 4 years left on a debt consolidation loan. That is when my youngest son will be leaving high school and starting college. That is also when the money I give my wife for child support will transitioning into making sure my sons get as good a college education as I can afford to give them. This means I… as poor as I am… have a plan to get my sons through college. Something I did not know would be possible while I was still married.
Who needs a big house? It just means more to clean.
Who needs a garage full of cars? Well, I do… but that will come later. I am a patient man. I will have a small car collection some day. And when that day comes I will appreciate it all the more.
In the end… appreciate what you have, and don’t take those things you appreciate for granted. I don’t… and I really believe that this is the source of my happiness.
Life is good, really!!!