I've never really had to worry about money. I mean, sure, there are times when I've had to cut some corners, but I've never worried about where my next meal will come from, how I can pay my rent, or other basic necessities like that.
I was thinking about that last week as I was planning to take off a couple of days from work. I've been a little overwhelmed lately and I thought a couple of days would do me some good.
Since I bought my house, I have stayed at home during most vacations in order to save money. Although I like staying at my house, I never quite feel like I've had a vacation when I go back because I haven't done anything any different. This time I decided I needed to do something for myself. Something that would make me feel like I actually did something on my vacation. I scheduled a massage and may even get a pedicure. I may go to the movies and have lunch with a friend. I want to relax. I want to be able to go back to work refreshed.
I can do that. I've had a little extra income this year that allows me to justify spending some extra money in order to maintain my sanity.
I think of my friends who can't though. I'm sure some of my friends would like to "escape," too. I'm sure they would like to treat themselves to a little pampering. But they don't have the financial cushion that I have. I know their jobs are often more physically demanding than mine and I know they get worn down probably more than I do. After all, my job is very flexible with a very friendly work environment. I also know that always trying to make ends meet at home adds stress and wears on people mentally as well.
I think about people I've talked to who think that if poor people made better decisions they might not be in tough situations. I would argue, though, that we all need to treat ourselves every once in a while.
As I think about my little splurges this week, I realize that I could put my money toward much better and more practical uses. But I also know that sometimes I just need a little reprieve from always being careful with my spending. And, poor or rich, don't we all deserve a break every once in a while??