I hate when people say that money is the root of all evil without admitting that it is also the root of all good. Most charitable acts are possible because of money – because we can afford to be generous. People who can give of their share their food, house, cars, clothes, etc have those things to share because of money. While it may be true that some of the most miserable people I’ve ever known have a lot of money, some of the most generous people I know have a lot of money too. Obviously what one chooses to do with his/her money defines whether or not money is good or bad for them.
I hate being tight on money – I think it’s terrifying and uncomfortable. I remember back in college my job as a nanny ended and I decided not to work that semester so I could concentrate on school. I remember not being able to buy toothpaste. I had to use my roommate’s toothpaste and she kept hiding it from me. That only lasted for a week (thank goodness) before I went home and raided my mom’s house. But not having money sucked. I’m fascinated by money. I’m fascinated how people can make money without really working very hard and others work themselves to shreds and don’t get enough. I’m fascinated by the very real feeling that no matter how much money you make, it always seems like you need more. I’m fascinated by people who don’t like money (that’s as strange to me as a pigeon that doesn’t peck). I’m fascinated by I’m fascinated by how people let their money change them.
Growing up, there was this family in Bountiful who didn’t have a ton of money – and they had this son who had a lot of medical problems but he had a lot of friends who would come over the house and see him. Well all of the sudden this family got a ton of money, bought a huge house and gave this son a huge room so that people could come see him and be more comfortable. But then it was like they were ticked off that so many more people came to see him. They assumed we were all there for the nice house and the money. I don’t know the situation all that well – I only when twice (once in the small house, once in the big house) but it’s like having money made the parents bitter. It was so weird.
And then I wonder if I am any different. When I went to Ghana I remember feeling quite used for my things, particularly in the village of Nsaakina. From what I could tell the people were very nice and helpful…. but I was interested in making deep, lasting friendships but they were just interested in my stuff (ie my money, CD player, etc). I felt lonely and used. And of course all this was compounded by the fact that I was a pasty white freak show they just wanted to come after school to watch. 🙂 It wasn’t that bad – but it was interesting to be a minority. Anyway but I wonder if that’s how that family felt and that makes it more understandable why they were irritated.
Hmm well now I’ve been totally sidetracked on what I’m talking about. Now I’m thinking that maybe money has nothing to do with your generosity. Like maybe the two aren’t mutually inclusive or mutually exclusive. They are two totally different matters. Well if that’s the case then I want both – to be generous and to have money. Just so that I never have to worry about having toothpaste.