If you were born around the early 1920’s, you would have grown up feeling what it was like to be up against it.
And not liked it. Or not realized everyone was poor, but did not know it. Your happpiness would be small things. Like knowing where your next meal was coming from without insecurity or doubt. A game of kick the can after chores were done, and you had pitched in with your smaller role in the family. Contributing for the greater good with the three generations under one household roof line.
Having family around you all pulling together. To lean on, help.
Struggle, sink, swim or succeed together.
Slowly starting to build a nest egg, accumulate some things of your own that you took very good care of. Because they could not be replaced easily if you did not. Or simply being grateful to tread life water and keep your head above the drink. Breaking even, not sliding, pulled under. A simple case of sobering respect.
Not much money trickling in but you get creative with the resources you have. Add a degree of ingenuity and partner with others in the same boat to make it happen, get it done. Taking care of your most basic needs first and counting your blessings for that alone. Not lamenting what you want that you don’t need. Keeping it simple. That is the approach kids raised by parents that learned that survival skill pass on to their households. Or try to these days.
But if you come in to the world with boatloads of worldly possessions and your life is dependent upon stuff, things, material objects, the skills to survive and be grateful for the little things can get lost. Forgotten. Replaced with new and shiny. Trendy and expensive. Earning something, going without to get it is its own reward.
But if you miss that roll up your sleeves basic law of the jungle survival skill experience, what happens?
You come to expect, even suggest you are entitled to have everything going and money in the bank without working for it too. The bedtime kid’s book at the night reading ritual called it “the galloping gimmees” I recall.
A disconnect from the simple reality of how it is supposed to work. Real world can mean competitiveness, working hard to get ahead or stay alive. Not having a son or daughter get to take a test over and over until they get a hundred or higher. For fear that they might have a nervous breakdown if they only got an 85 but worked hard to get that “B” not an “A”. The expectation that it is up to you. Not someone else. Or getting something for nothing. Through manipulation, spin, hook or by crook. No matter what.
Like our Maine Governor reminds with ten little words often that he learned, applied growing up.
“If it is to be, it is up to me”.
Not someone else will take care of this, this and this. Not my responsibility if things go south. But on the other hand, give me the glory and ticker tape parade and credit for any and all that goes right, is good in the world. Beaming, basking in the sunlight of attention with a Little Jack Horner oh what a good boy am I self satisfaction.
Maine is not a state flush with cash, wealth but loaded, wealthy with a sense of community, family, and the respect for the great outdoors we are blessed with everywhere we turn, crank our head. It is a state where its up to you to pitch in, step up and help with the slack. To raise up our children to be responsible, have a life purpose and not have a hand out looking for something for nothing. Our happiness is an inside job and not dependent on everyone around us having a part in the script. Not external because we are empowered to be resourceful, patient, to work hard to do our part. And not distracted by material possessions or the need for constant attention, to be entertained or parked in the lime light 24/7. It is still about others, not ME in Maine.