First off, good news: I put up my new zines in my Etsy shop earlier this week and a couple days later, I had my first sales! I couldn’t be more excited! AND I listed the first HellaScarf for sale today with more to come. What’s a HellaScarf? Well, you’d better go find out!
ALSO, today, my chiropractor told me that my back is stable and I can start ramping up my exercise towards dancing again! Huzzah!
The not so good news: If only I could afford dance classes! But I’m on the hunt for more work and am hopeful. Things might be tight financially, but my life is rich in so many other ways.
I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what it means to “be poor.” I have a childhood memory of standing in my parents’ bedroom, in front of my Dad’s tall, dark wood dresser, and asking, “Daddy, are we poor?” I don’t really remember why I asked. Maybe I was beginning to notice things like my Mom writing down every expense, or how some of my friends’ houses were a lot bigger than ours… I don’t remember feeling ashamed of this idea of “being poor” – I was just curious as to what it meant. I think Dad said something like, “No, but maybe we’re lower middle class.” Which kind of makes me laugh, now.
Now that I know more about the world, I realize what a privileged childhood I had and what amazing parents I have. I’ve always been in awe of how they paid for my education. I often ask myself, “How did they do it?” I’m not totally certain, but I’m pretty sure they’re not rolling in dough. What I think now is: they were careful.
I’m trying to be careful. Trying my darnedest by darning my socks and hoarding quarters for laundry. I budget. I make art and crafts to sell. I don’t have a car (thank goodness). I keep track of my debt because I WILL pay it off.
And I really don’t think I’m POOR. I see too many people on the streets of this city every day to even joke about it. But sometimes I look at my bank account and feel poor. Like most things in life, is “wealth” a state of mind? Money seems so concrete. And I don’t want to be RICH. I’d just like to get by – pay bills and buy groceries. And I realize now how much I’ve wasted on ridiculous things, or buying too much, when I didn’t need to – when I wasn’t so worried about money. Hindsight, you know… But hopefully the challenge is teaching me some very important lessons. And I can embrace a good challenge, right? Like my friend MB said recently, we yearn for stability, but there’s a lot to be said for embracing chaos.
No one likes talking about money, and I feel like that’s all I’ve been talking about lately with folks. I know I’ve been worrying about it a lot lately. But I’m also trying to not get depressed. Asking for help helps. And knowing that I’m driven and will figure it out somehow.
And remembering how much I do have. All the ways I am rich: family, friends, health, creativity, and this city. Oh, this city… I’m glad I’m here!