As I get older I realize how life has changed me over the many years. I remember being in my early 20’s with the world ahead of me and not having a worry in the world. If I did have a worry, it was something ridiculous. I had no clue about real life worries because I still lived under the protection of my parents and while they certainly had worries I never paid attention to them or gave their worries a second thought. I look back on my life and remember being self-absorbed, selfish and vain. I also remember being care-free and laughing a lot. I was all about having fun and nothing else. I worked and I went to school, but other than the occasional spat with a boyfriend, life was just too easy. The funny thing is I didn’t think it was easy and as I watch my daughter who is 18 years old rant about her problems, I think to myself.. “You don’t know what problems are, you have NO FREAKING CLUE!” I scream that in my mind at her, but I clamp my mouth shut and just let her rattle on about her current trouble. I wished I could go back in time and slap that young girl that I was. I wished I could scream at her to pay attention to her parents struggles. Listen to her mother while she is talking to her daughter, because what she has to say is something you are going to need to get through life down the road….but I can’t. All I can do is speak loudly and often to my kids and hope they hear me as I wished I had heard my mother. My kids have no clue what lies ahead of them in their lives, and while I hope and pray that it’s an easy road for them, I know that it won’t be. Life is not easy, living isn’t easy. They don’t realize that the choices that they make today will effect their futures in so many profound ways.
If I could turn back the clock their would be many things I would do differently. I would have gotten my degree, I would have traveled the world but most of all I would have listened to my parents when it came to managing money. People (including myself) live in the here and now and the future be damned. I didn’t realize until the last ten years how saving money should have been a major priority. I used to make excuses as to why I never saved money and say if you have kids you can’t save money. Of course that’s not true, you can save money, you just have to prioritize and budget and learn how to put money away. I still struggle with it to this day because my one satisfaction is going shopping and spending money. I love to spend money and it doesn’t matter if it’s for myself or for someone else, I just love to spend it. My husband is the opposite. He will not spend a dime, detest shopping and is perfectly happy sitting on the couch all weekend long watching TV.
So where am I going with this? Well, the warrior in the picture reminds me of myself. I am constantly warring with myself to not spend money, to learn to save and to teach my kids the value of the dollar. We as parents have to do this for our children and we should start early. If I could do it over again, I would have begun teaching myself and my children when they were toddlers to respect money. Today people have no respect for money and they don’t treat it as they should. Unfortunately, money is a necessary evil to get through life and we aren’t teaching our children the importance of saving. It’s not being taught in school and it’s not being taught at home. If it was, then the rich wouldn’t be just 1% of the United States population. I think of Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and all the other wealthy people and see that they aren’t any different than you or I, they just looked at the dollar as a thing to respect and made decisions with their money that allowed them to accumulate more. They aren’t geniuses or lucky, they just did what was right and did it with thought and care.
Now that I have rambled on about money and my life and my mistakes, tell me..What would you do different if you could go back in time and change things? Would you even change anything? If not, why? Would love your thoughts and comments.
Peace and Love,