Growing up, we didn’t have much at all. We were always having to scrimp and save. Life was tough. I don’t want to go on and on about it too much because this is still the reality for so many people in this day and age all over the world. How do we make ends meet? What do we have sacrifice this month to make sure that all is tied over for the next?
My mum would always have the Argos catalogue at home. I absolutely loved this book. I loved all the different sections. To others it may have been a catalogue the same as any other. But to me it was a book of aspirations. I knew exactly which games I was going to buy when we had enough money. I always had my eye on the MB games; Guess Who, Monopoly, Scrabble. I knew the prices. I knew if the prices had gone up or down from issue to issue. We never bought those games…but that didn’t matter. I knew I would be able to buy them one day.
It wasn’t just the games that I wanted. As I grew older, there was the jewellery and watches, lighting, bedroom furniture, bedding…the list just went on. I knew what I wanted. We just didn’t have the means to buy them.
Argos. In the days of John Lewis, Harvey Nics, Liberty, Selfridges, I’ll bet some of you are scoffing right now. That doesn’t matter to me. The point is that whether I desired things from Argos or Selfridges – we would have to think twenty times before making a decision to purchase anything.
I don’t look back in anger though. I don’t look back with pity. I don’t look back in wonder at those days. That was what I went through, so that’s that.
In fact the ‘not having things’ when I was little taught me a few things along the way.
It gave me the drive to want to be in a position in life where I wouldn’t have to think umpteen times before being able to buy something that I wanted. It taught me the valuable lesson of working towards a goal. You want something? What will it take to achieve it? How do I get it? And then you work and do what it takes. It taught me to save. Save for a rainy day. Put a little aside for those things that you can’t account for and knock you for six when they happen.
Yep – all great and all positive. I’m glad that I went through it. Blah, blah, blah. Aren’t I great human being?
Hmm. But you know from the title of this post that this can’t be it. Where am I going because the title is ‘confusion’?
The problem is that I have not got the ability to live for the moment. Carpe diem. I envy those free spirits who haven’t a penny to their name but somehow live life to the full. Carpe dieming their asses off.
I can’t do that. I panic towards the end of each month. How much money do I have left? Am I teaching my children to value everything they have in life? How am I going to develop the hunger and drive to do more in life?
Also – you only live once as they say. I am Hindu so I suppose I kind of subscribe to that on one level, but I also believe in karma and reincarnation so I am conflicted as well. But let’s just say for arguments sake – we only live once. Then shouldn’t I stop thinking about the future, and live for now?
Which is right? Which is wrong? Who knows? Today I have no answers. No conclusions. No words of comfort. Just questions. What is the correct way? No one really knows. But as long as we do what is right for us…We can’t be wrong can we?
PS: I eventually bought scrabble and monopoly when I was 32 years old. Haven’t bought Guess Who yet. Who knows? Maybe this Christmas?