Red Shoulder Hawk

Red Shoulder Hawk

Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Crushing my spirit

I'd like to be able to write down how much revolving debt we are carrying. Xena specifically believes information like that is private, so I won't reveal it. I think she has affluenza worse than I do. But we are both working on healing ourselves, and coming at the solution from slightly different perspectives. By God's grace we'll recover our true generous selves before too much longer.

The debt load is crushing my spirit. I can see it in my eyes: I am happy and profoundly sad at the same time. I've recovered the smallest things: my children's laughter, the joy of a clear blue sky. I've recovered things a bit larger: celebrating the start of school with ice cream at the local creamery, driving a sick friend home from the doctor's office. I'm in the middle of recovering the happiness in larger things: abundant freelance design work, buying an electric car.

Together, my wife and I have brought the revolving debt down by about a quarter. With continued discipline, we could be close to average in a couple of years time. Part of recovering from affluence is being able to delay gratification, and choosing to put money towards the debt rather than a new vacuum cleaner or hedge trimmer is part of that. I can borrow a hedge trimmer. Doing so also gives me an excuse to talk with my neighbor, and connecting with the people around me is another step on the road to recovery. I do so more confidently each time I try.

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