Do you remember when you envisioned what your adult life would be like? Is your story playing out the same way? Probably not. That’s okay! Life has its way of throwing surprises at us and sweet presents that are so unexpected.
As a young girl I aspired to be a teacher and would line up all my dolls and my little sister and proceed to teach them. Somewhere along the way I lost my dream and self confidence. I thought I wasn’t good enough to teach, to actually inspire children. Then as a 35 year old mom, my son’s preschool director asked me if I’d be interested in volunteering and helping out. After a few months that led to a full time job with children. From there I took early childhood education classes and landed a job as a reading paraeducator at a local school.
Fourteen years later I continue to teach young children every day. Yet I’m not a certified teacher but a paraeducator. I could continue college to complete it but I’m tired and I love what I’m doing now. So maybe I’m not living my childhood dream but that’s okay. For dreams change and take different forms as we age.
I am content where I’m at now…living and celebrating my life as it is. I’m not wallowing in lost dreams or questioning of what ifs. What’s the point of doing that? If I really think about it, my life and how it’s played out have far exceeded my expectations. I’m blessed beyond measure. My husband and I have raised two wonderful boys ( young men now), they both have met gems for girls, we hold steady jobs and we share our own haven we call home. That’s a blessed life I would say!
As an adult I’ve never cared about having money or in our case, the lack of. I do like to keep our bills paid and have emergency money if we ever needed it. But beyond that, Tom and I feel rich in other ways. We both would give things away before we sold them for top dollar. We are plain simple people, with no agenda, airs about us or greed for money.
Our wealth securely lies in our marriage, a family we both hold dear to our heart and our jobs that we are so blessed with.We are rich in health and with a few exceptions. All these things are priceless without any doubt. I know that many people wish for all these precious things all their life and never obtain them and that makes it even more special.
There was a brief time that we got hooked, though. Do you remember the Megabucks last year when it hit a billion cash prize? In our area there was a frenzy and buzz around town about pooling money, buying tickets and racing to convenience stores to hopefully buy the life changer. We sat at the dinner table and played out our dreams. We would definitely make sure our sons would be all set in life, share with family ( although this is a tough decision because where would you draw the line?), go on vacations more often, continue renovating our house and maybe hire contractors to finish it so Tom could rest.
Throughout all this money planning and dreaming, my humble thoughts transformed into ones I didn’t recognize! What if we won, we asked, unlike any spoken words we’ve ever given breath to. A twinge of greed consumed me for a few days and I had to give it to the Lord to rid it for me. The drawing came and went. We didn’t even stay up to check but went to bed like anxious and excited children at Christmas time.
In the morning the dream fizzled and we plunged back into reality…without a big lump of money that would take care of us for life. But I’m truly relieved that we didn’t win, for we have richness in love and family and money can’t buy that! I believe deeply in my heart that God answered my prayer and the result was that we lost. It’s nice to pay the bills and have a cushion to lay back on, but money causes many problems, feuds, resentments and brings out the worse in people. I don’t want to jump into that chaotic world where we could transform into strangers and not truly be ourselves.
Now we don’t play the lottery except for a few scratch tickets on New Year’s Eve for fun. We’ll keep it lighthearted and continue to bask in this terrific simple life! Money is okay to have but not a necessity for us.