Sunday, September 7, 2008

A Better Way Of Living

Sometimes I wonder how we got to this point in our society. I wonder how it is that our whole lives came to be built on what seems to be a never ending cycle of stress, worry, and fear. I look around and all I see is how trapped we seem to be. How many of us have to sacrifice things we love, want, or need because our lifestyles, and the methods provided to maintain such comfortable lifestyles, dictate that we must do so. The binds that prevent us from experiencing many of the truest joys of life and continue to push us out of bed to our 9 to 5 jobs each morning are spread far and wide, undeterred by age, race, income, or hometown. They are the school loans, the insurance premiums, the mortgages, the cars, the interest rates, the credit cards, the ever out of reach promotion, and without fail the very comforts of life that we strive so hard for that ultimately end up making our lives uncomfortable.

I have friends that wanted to travel. I have friends that wanted to volunteer, teaching children in impoverished countries. Friends that are now, working part time, trying to put themselves through school. My mother wanted to be a nurse, to own her own home, to retire comfortably, without worry. She's now just barely going back to school, over forty, without any real estate to her name and without a retirement account to fall back on. My father wanted to make his living writing music. He currently works in electronic marketing, writing songs at night, and flying to Nashville in pursue of a dream that's slowly become a hobby over the last twenty years. One of my best friends from high school wanted to be a make-up artist. Now she works at a dealership, selling cars for sixty hours a week. What is it that allows us to write off the things we want, as later dates in our calendar, and things to do - but at the bottom of our list. How is it that we let the most important things fall through the cracks for the day to day sake of "making it", of "surviving"?

I wonder if college tuition was free, if health care was provided without a second thought, and if banks and credit card companies were regulated more closely, would the average middle class worker stand a little more of a chance when trying to build a life? If hospital bills and co-pays didn't force people to sell their homes would it be easier for someone to finance a small business? If not for student loans that keep us tied down and credit cards that never seem to get paid off would there be more people taking a year to go travel and see the world? Is it a lot to ask that we be free to move about and create the lives that we truly wish for? Should our society not be built on the ideas of lifting up its citizens instead of chaining them down for the sake of profit? How did we get to this point? And more importantly, is there a better way of living?



Codys! said...

One word... Capitalism. But hey, if you really want to escape, you can always find a way. I myself will find a way, even if I have to sale everything I own. Can't afford a plane ticket? Take a boat. Can't pay for a boat? Bribe someone on an oil freighter to smugggle you to Europe. That's what Nick and I will most likely do. It's all about your attitude. said...

I know what you mean. I worry about this all of the time. My dream is to be a web designer to pay the bills and publish best-selling novels to indulge myself. I've decided that this is going to happen no matter what. I think we all need to hold onto our dreams, despite what we are supposed to and not supposed to do.

Varun said...

The world is certainly geting into a closure with no other things left to do than our daily tiring routine and no dreams to follow.
But there are people who do so and we can just hope we are one of them.

I'm Just Me said...

Been out of the blog loop for about a month.. I'm happy to be back. Great post! How often we let the dreams of tomorrow slip away based on the needs/wants of today. In this country where most people are one or two pay checks away from it any wonder that we take loans on the hopes of getting to a better place? Maybe with changes coming things like health care, college education, buying a home and small business start-ups will be addressed. It's not easy. These basic rites of passage that make up the "American Dream" have led more and more people into a daily nightmare.

Erica said...

All I have to say is, "Amen, sister!"