Today I read a post on Facebook by my friend Don that had launched one the most intelligent discussions I'd ever seen on the site. The post was a picture of somebody who'd written a sign seeming to be a response to the people of the "Occupy Wall Street" movement. What followed was a discussion on economics, privilege, hard work, expectations/entitlements, capitalism/free markets, etc.
And it got me thinking.
The last thing I wrote in my comment on the post was "If what I needed most in my life right now was to make more money, I'd find a way to make that happen."
I do need to make that happen, but it's not the number one thing I need to do in my life. Working part time is what allows me to do that thing, which is to spend time with my son.
Anyway, I know the day will come, and not too long off, when I do need to turn my attention again toward my career and begin redeveloping that part of my life. Thinking about that got me in the mood to do some focused meditation for
Today's New Activity: Bath Time Dress Rehearsal
The thing about emergencies is that they're rarely predictable. It occurred to me that if anything should happen to suddenly change my circumstances, I'd have to make major changes in my life/work/living situation in order to make things work. This is true for everybody, and if it were me alone I wouldn't even worry about it all that much. I have always been able to support myself.
Having a son makes things very different, so during my bath I worked through, in my mind, all the steps I would take if a sudden event necessitated the reconfiguration of my life. I've heard of this exercise being practiced in therapy, wherein the therapist is trying to help, for instance, a woman in an unhappy marriage work through the steps that could lead to her independence, even if in the present she feels trapped in her predicament because of seemingly insurmountable dependence, financial and otherwise.
It's a really important thing to do, for any person in any situation: emergency preparedness.
I found the exercise pretty mentally overwhelming. When I considered what I would have to sacrifice--namely time with my son--in order to support us well enough to have our own apartment and pay for the childcare that would enable me to work full time...that thought alone was daunting.
But the reassuring thing is knowing that many, many women have done it, and accomplished more than I've even yet dreamed. That thought fills me with joy and confidence.
So I can't say this was the most relaxing bath time I've ever spent, but it was well worth my time if only because it made me realize how far away I am from being able to confidently say I could handle such a change in circumstances well, and to know the work I need to do to get myself/us there. A major part of dreaming about where you're going is honestly assessing where you are.