February 05, 2013

A Simple Girl in a Material World?

I had a chat last night with the Honey, we were discussing the differences in each of our "worlds" so to speak.  He was raised both within and on the fringes of the city, it's not a big one but it's a city nonetheless.  I was raised way deep in the country with party lines into the late 80's and no 911 service till the mid-90's.  That wasn't so much the main topic however, the issue at hand- that seems to be a recurrent thing with me- is the material fixation people have.  I've never understood an attachment to "stuff". 

Now, yes I'm human and American and therefore have a certain appreciation for nice things, I do like my little computer, pretty jewelry and my big truck, but I don't live for them.  To me they are replaceable, as is most everything physical in my life.  The only things that are not replaceable are my people and my critters.  I don't quite get the concept of having the unnecessarily large house, or a pricey car or anything that begs to be judged by the Joneses.  I like having the best that I can afford, not struggling to pay for something that is flashy because it looks nice.  I grew up in a place where having stuff didn't make you any better or more than your neighbor and I heard very often growing up the phrase "you can't take it with you when you die".  That was mostly aimed at money but it can apply to pretty much everything.  Well, some could argue that while you are alive, you can enjoy it.  Ok.  But what happens when you die?  All it is is something for children, relatives or the state to pick over, fight over, or try to take because they were coveting it all along.

I also don't understand the idea of working oneself to death for said stuff.  The way the honey put it to me was, always working to get the brass ring.  If you work hard then you should have things to show for it, i.e. the more you have the harder you've worked.  What's the brass ring though?  Where's the definition?  Or is it different for each person?  Maybe my brass ring is a comfortable, small house on some land with a reliable vehicle and the means to go on a trip every now and then.  Someone else's brass ring may be the brand new 5 bedroom house, 2 cars, 1 motorcycle, a 35' camper plus an abundance of toys.  I don't see the necessity in it all.  I do get hobbies, I do get passions, I do get serious hobbies that can double as minor careers.  If what you do is visit various camp sites throughout the US every summer, then yes you'd need some way to do that.  But do you need ALL of it just for the sake of having it? 

I work.  I work in a male dominated field.  I make money that I'd like to see stretch past the monthly bills.  I do no believe that I am owed anything more than decent time off, a pedicure for feet that live in boots, and a comfortable home.  Comfortable, not big, not pricey, not pretentious.  Honey sees that point of view as one of a martyr.  Sacrificing too much for nothing.  I see it as being satisfied with what you have.  I see nothing wrong with not achieving what people saw as the "American Dream".  The way I figure it is, your dream is your own...whether that's a 3 room shack on the side of a mountain or a two story plantation house on 40 acres.  We all make our own paradise and on that day we can't take it with us.  I have a friend who works in the banking industry, she said she's seen ugly things happen to people in regard to money.  I've personally seen it destroy a mother/daughter, father/daughter and a set of sisters.  I am very grateful that my family is somewhat poor (comparatively speaking), that means we are grounded and once the parents are gone, there's nothing to fight over. 

Maybe I'm just feeling my age, or maybe it's something deeper, more spiritual than that.  (that was mom's theory)  As much as I enjoy the things I have, if I lost them all today but still had my child, my pets and my family, that's all I really need.  All the rest is just fluff. 

1 comment:

  1. Nicely put Sis-in-law... ;-)
    I do agree that Family is all We need, But I do think I'd lose my mind without my computer... ;-) after a while anyway, I get bored easily. And I only have so many books to keep me occupied. ;-) (tee-hehee)



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