Have been home from our travels for a couple of weeks. Been sitting with all I saw especially in Nevada. Now a couple of thumbs up for Nevada. They have loosened abortions laws rather than repealed them. Nevada has also elected more women to their legislature than men. Check out the link. (https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/05/17/nevadas-legislature-women-outnumber-men-first-nation-carson-city-may-never-be-same/) This happened after we were home. An unexpected surprise.
That said, this blog isn't about the above, though there's much from my point of view to celebrate. It was about the amount of poverty we saw in our travels around Nevada. This is still reverberating for me! I have always had angst around money. This comes from my younger years and the very lean times we experienced. So the residual feeling (vs truth) hovers around not enough. Well, .... we looked unbelievably wealthy compared to what we saw down south. Gave us a deep appreciation for our circumstances. This triggered a discussion about our trip to Florida. Specifically to Boca Raton to visit friends a number of years back. Boca, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, these are places of opulence. Many of the world's wealthy 1% have a home in Florida. For years I had told myself I could do or buy anything I wanted. Realized my wants were pretty small in comparison. Neil and I lived in the land of chump change by comparison to the wealth that surrounded us in Florida!
There are two powerful lessons here:
The first one is your situation can take on a different light depending on where you are standing! We looked lacking when we hung around in Florida and looked like kings when in Nevada. Neither of which was really true!
Secondly comparisons create suffering. My 'not enough' theme was fed caviar in Boca Raton. Wow I really didn't have 'enough'. Fast forward to our trip to Nevada and I felt uncomfortable with how well off we were by contrast and worried about what to do with the harshness of lives we saw. This thinking helps no one. It's a waste of time and energy.
So I stepped back, focused on my circumstances vs eyeing someone else's, felt grateful for what I have (and it IS enough!!) and will do what I can to help others based on my values. This feels good. It is good. The gift of travel has allowed me to see sites and experience life outside my bubble. It's given me new perspectives. As I said in my last blog The American Dream, it's been an eye opening!