My current stream of consciousness is kind of all over the place, but bear with me.

I am not a woman of money. I don’t know what it will look like if and when I finish school this coming May, but I don’t expect a lot of money. I actually am not sure what to expect, but I am hoping that it will be something decent, something worthwhile. I know I didn’t go into this profession thinking I’d be raking it in, but I am hoping that it will be sufficient, enough to keep me happy and sane and just enough to get me out of this house. The hard part is that I like nice things and nice food and often times, these things and foods come with a higher price than I should probably indulge in. But that’s okay. Sometimes that’s what rainy days are for, that’s what saving is for. But at the end of the day, these nicer things and nicer foods aren’t the things that make me happy.

My parents did a lot of things for me as a kid. They shielded and sheltered me. While some can argue that wasn’t great, but at the same time, they gave me something that I don’t think I could have gotten otherwise: a childhood filled with friends and memories. I never felt poor or low-income. I felt happy. While I didn’t think we were rich or raking in the dough, I knew that we were okay. I knew that I had friends and a family and despite how much I hated some of their authority and decisions for me, I loved them anyway. They taught me that at the end of the day, a few pennies are just a few pennies, but a family can’t be replaced. They taught me that money will come and go, but it’s not important to have the “finer” things in life because I already have them. My parents, or more specifically, my father, didn’t want me to worry about the things that didn’t matter like money so I could go live life and be a kid. My father made it possible for me to not depend on money, to see it as a necessity to live.

Yes, maybe I wasn’t able to fully learn the value of money in that way, I learned something better. I don’t need a lot to make me happy, but the little things. While I may be slightly unhappy now with a mother who is nuts, but set that aside, I am happy. Sure, I like fancy foods, fancy things, but I can live without those. Give me a decent living space and people in my life who matter and I will be happy.

I don’t need much and that’s okay. It’s what the East Side taught me and even though it becomes a smaller and smaller part of my existence, it will remain a big part of me.