03 October 2012

Difficult Days

We're all living through diffficult times right now.  For some of us they aren't that difficult personally, but for many of us they're the worst times we've ever lived through.  High unemployment, rising prices, lost homes, forced moves, high divorce rates, huge student loan debts--it seems impossible to get ahead and prepare for the future for many of us, and that can make it very difficult to be living our lives fully and completely.

For my wife and me, the economic downturn hit us very severely.  I was laid off, we were forced to foreclose on our home, and other severe economic and personal issues have arisen to make life very challenging.  We even ended up living four hours away from each other for seven months, which was a very difficult time in many ways.  And even though the layoff happened three years ago, we most certainly haven't yet recovered from it--a full "recovery" won't happen for a while, we know.

What that means to us, though, is mostly that money is very, very tight.  We still enjoy ourselves and our lives--we just don't have as many options available to us as to what we can do with our time.  We most definitely can't plan a trip to visit friends in Germany, and we can't plan to spend a week in the Bahamas.  But there are other things that we could do and that we can do, and we enjoy those things, too.  We just have to make choices based more on money now, and that's okay--that's what we have right here and right now, and while we definitely aren't going to roll over and give up, we also are going to make sure that we aren't being irresponsible during a time that can most accurately be called a recovery period for us.

These days are difficult for us, but not impossible.  These days hold challenges, but we do our best to rise up and meet the challenges for what they are.  Whether we enjoy our lives and what we're able to do is completely up to us, and we constantly make the decision to be content with what we have and to enjoy the opportunities available to us rather than bemoan the opportunities lost.  And we do our best to speed the recovery along by watching what we spend and where and how we spend it, though we haven't yet gone so far as to live a Spartan lifestyle--after all, Spartans we are not.

Difficult days must be accepted for what they are, and we must make decisions that allow us to live through those days in the best ways possible.  With the acceptance comes a practicality that otherwise wouldn't be a part of our lives, for when we accept the difficulties, we can deal with them on our terms instead of allowing them to blow us about as if we were a piece of paper outside on a windy day.  You're probably going through your own difficult days in your own ways, and I wish you all the best in doing so--hang in there and don't give up, and you will find that light at the end of the tunnel.  I wish you a bright, bright light and a quick journey to it!

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