This one is from my friend Jodi who is a single mother. I’ve known her since I was a kid and adore her entire family – her daughter Ashley, now 16, is particularly funny. Here’s Jodi’s thought:
“When Ashley was about 5 I was taking classes and the subject of poverty came up. Technically, we were probably living below the poverty line, but I asked Ashley–“Do you think we’re poor?” and she said “Poor?! What are you talking about, we have fun all the time!” I loved that answer!”
My friend G saw Jodi’s response (I had sent a mass email) and she also threw in her two cents:
“I’d go with the 5-year-old’s answer. Seriously Shel, when were you the happiest…when you had the most money? Doubtful. How much money did we really have per week in Malta?? And I was having a blast! Right now I live on less than $1000 a month and this is one of the better times in my life. Unless you have the time to use your money to travel, I honestly believe than money is more trouble than it’s worth.”
UPDATE: Raul decided to weigh in … thanks babe!
“Ya know, I really thought about this question for quite awhile last night – and I decided it’s a very very difficult question to answer. I also decided I don’t know if I’m really qualified to answer it. I can write paragraphs about every perspective I can think of concerning being poor – third-world poor, poverty, relative poor – there are so many frames of reference you can put this into that it’s hard to just scope it to one. I am very thankful and blessed that I can say I have never felt poor, much of that being the wondeful people that have surrounded me throughout my entire life, and I also don’t really believe I’ll ever feel poor the rest of my life given the foundation I have.
I guess if I have to put it into a summary, poor to me is someone who truly has nothing to hope for in their life – no hope for change, the future, etc. And that is really a bad answer, because that means anyone can be poor regardless of how much money or material wealth they have.”
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