Friday, February 22, 2013

Give a little get a little?

My mom just asked me to work overnight for her on Monday since she will (finally!) be taking her certification test on Tuesday. I was silent for a long while as I thought of a way of saying 'no' without looking like an absolutely horrible person. I finally settled on saying that I have never worked overnight. Which is true. She said that it was fine and the person she usually works with could work by herself and the she just offered it to me because "we need the money." Although she then went on to say that I could keep the money for myself. And so that ended. And to be honest, I'm moving in with my husband soon and as yet don't have a job and I have financial obligations that will continue into the foreseeable future. And yet I said no. I'm realizing that at this point in my life I'm just not willing to inconvenience myself for anyone even if it will help me in some way. And I especially feel this way towards my mom.  I am annoyed when she asks me to do anything for her. There is a part of me that wants to feel bad for feeling this way but another part thinks of all of the inconveniences I have had to endure because of her. For example, giving her the small savings I had managed to scrape together in college because she didn't have enough money to support herself and my younger brother. And why didn't she have enough money? Because she quit her job because it was too stressful! And she did this without getting another job first. And she had no savings because even though she's educated, she works in a field that doesn't  have anything to do with her education and doesn't pay sh*t. Eventually she got another job that paid even less and now my brother and I have to help support the family. The vast majority of the little we make goes to help pay family bills. We also had to buy an almost new car on credit because our old one broke down and we didn't even have enough savings to buy a cheap used car.

I'm crying as I write this.

I know my family is not the worst out there. I have never experienced any kind of abuse from any of them (unless you count my father's complete and utter abandonment of my brother and I) and we always had enough to eat, etc.

I just wish I had more. I think what scares me is that I obviously come from a family of LOSERS and I'm afraid that I'm on the path to continuing that tradition. I honestly think the only thing keeping me from it is my husband whose family is on the exact opposite side of the poverty spectrum.

I can't help but think of this article. Here's a quote:

"In a paper published last month, he argues that middle and upper-income black families don’t accumulate wealth as quickly because rather than investing their money, they give more of it to poor friends and relatives."
It's so scary because if I wasn't actively pushing against it, I could see that happening to me. I was still in college when my mom asked for the money. Can you imagine? I was already being impoverished by my mom before I even left school!!! And I have little hope of ever seeing that money again.

 And mom always speaks so fondly of the daughter of one of her friends. This daughter is a little older than me. Many times during her college career she took out extra student loans to help her mom pay the mortgage. All this did, of course, was postpone the inevitable. Because the daughter graduated and her mom still can't pay the mortgage. SMH. What a dead-end reason to take out extra debt. And my mom thinks this is a positive thing! What kind of f*cked up family am I from?

It's not enough that I'm from a family that can't help me pay for school, I'm also from a family that thinks it's a good idea to take money from a kid that's still in school.

I can't help but think of my other recently graduated friends who also have poor, immigrant parents. Their parents don't borrow money from them. Many of them live with their parents now and don't pay rent. While I must contribute to family bills or the whole operation goes under.

Why did I have to come from a deadbeat dad and irrational mother? I honestly would rather have never existed if this was my only option to come into this world.

So much for being positive but I had to get that out.

Until next time.

Friday, February 15, 2013

So I'm changing up this site


I can't say that I will only be positive from now on but I will keep my more melancholy reflections in a private journal.

This blog was supposed to be about me becoming a more positive person but instead it is turning into the opposite. I will use this site for its original purpose as a log of my transformation from a rather negative person to a much more positive person. I don't that I will ever be a super positive person but I know that what I am doing now is not working for me or anyone else. My worrying and fretting about all of the pain and suffering in the world does nothing to change those situations and it is only contributing to making me miserable.


I've decided I want a 'happy person glow.'  I'm already young and attractive so I'm sure that adding that 'glow' can only bring more opportunities. I have friend with said 'glow' and things always seem to go so well for her. I'm sure it's not the only reason but it certainly can't hurt. This is the same friend I mentioned in this post.

I'm excited about the possibilities for this blog. I started almost a year ago with such high expectations and I don't like where it's going. So, it's up to me to change it.

I really must make a change in my mindset. My current mindset is causing me to be devoid of energy  and I truly can't afford to be that way at this point in my life. As a young person who is not in the best financial position and who doesn't have strong career prospects, my choices and actions right now will set the stage for a lot of my future. In some ways I feel that I'm already falling behind but luckily I am still young and I have an absolutely fantastic and ambitious spouse.

There's still a lot of room for me to do great things in this world. I just need to do them and leave ineffective and unproductive thinking in the dust.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Burning the will

I'm not sure why but for some reason I've been really inspired by the following pic:

This is Thich Quang Duc, a Buddhist monk who self-immolated in 1963 as a protest against Buddhist oppression by the Christian-led Vietnamese government. All of the accounts I have read state that after some of his fellow monks covered him in gasoline, he lit himself on fire with a match. He then sat PERFECTLY STILL while the flames engulfed him for about 10 minutes. After which, his charred corpse toppled over and he was covered in a cloth by his fellow monks and taken away in a coffin. Afterwards he was cremated. His heart survived the cremation and it is now kept as holy relic in Xá Lợi Pagoda in  Hồ Chí Minh City, Vietnam.

I am usually a person who cannot stand to look at violent videos or pictures so I'm not sure how I am able to look at this so serenely. Maybe because I know that he purposely did this to himself?

Possibly it is because he sits so still in a situation that would cause most people unspeakable agony that my brain can't quite register it as "real."

All I know is that I am inspired by such a person and I'm still not completely sure why. Maybe it's because his actions show a supreme self-discipline and a realistic lack of fear of death. 

His actions somehow mix selfishness and selflessness in a way that make sense to me.