Monday, May 4, 2009

Before the recession...

we were really really in love. This is what I heard on television today.

After all of the kids were in bed tonight I started watching Dr. P*hil. I want to preface this by saying I do not normally watch daytime talk shows. I have been TIVO'ing Dr. Phi*l for quite sometime and usually just erase it. Today's show caught my eye so I watched. The things I heard these people say amazed me.

I am not sure what the topic was called exactly, but it had to do with Detroit and the terrible situation that city, like many cities, is in due to the economy. They highlighted two young couples who both have beautiful new baby boys around 7 months old. These were college educated and previously employed people. They apparently were living pretty well before the bottom fell out of the automotive industry. One couple stated they were making around $120,000 prior to job losses and now are making less than $40,000 and can not find jobs.

I am not discrediting this as a sad situation. Anytime a families income is reduced like that it is difficult and the situation should not be taken lightly. However it was everything else they said that caught my attention. Both couples major concerns (other than losing their homes) were the cuts they had to make. The first couple says (as they are eating pizza Hu*t for dinner) that they can no longer go out with friends, go to the movies, take a nice vacation or buy the baby new brand name clothes. Please do not get me wrong, I love to go out to a nice dinner, taking my family on vacation and I have an affinity for boutique clothing and European shoes that makes my husband want to hide when I say the kids outgrew everything. That being said, I can also stretch a dollar to make it a twenty if I need to.

I think that in general we are such a materialistic society. I am guilty of it myself. I love to see my precious children dressed in GAP and Gymboree. However we must realize that these material things do not make us who we are. Of course it is easier to grab a pizza than to mix up a dough and make it from scratch. It is also more fun to sit in a theater with yummy movie popcorn and raisinettes than to grab a movie from the library and pop the popcorn yourself. But are having to make these changes a reason to not love your spouse as much as you did when you could afford the small luxuries?

There are days that I think this recession is a blessing. I know it sounds crazy. People are losing their jobs, homes and cars etc. We have been affected, though thankfully not to these extremes. As for being a blessing... people are spending more time with their families, changing spending habits and praying more. This is not how I would want people to come to do these things, but this is what I see happening.

As for my family we will continue to live a slower life. We will still get our movies from the library or borrow them from friends, we will eat homemade pizza and I will pop the popcorn. We will shop second hand and get out the old toys instead of buy new ones. I will also continue to love my husband as much as the day we got married even if we can't go to Disney World this year!


  1. Lacy, this post it great. You are right on with your thoughts and we couldn't agree more. My husband and I had this very conversation a few days ago.

    When we were waiting for Molly's referral we started thinking about me staying home with her. The thought thrilled me and scared me at the same time. I have not not had a job since I was 17 years old. Not to mention it would cut our income almost in half. But we took the plunge. It is really hard but we are making it. Our family of four is living on what the couple on Dr Phil thinks is rock bottom!

    I think this resession is a good reality check for some people out there. Don't get me wrong, I feel for those who really are loosing their homes and jobs. But on the other hand it is opening some eyes to the real world for others.

    Nice post.

  2. Wow Lacy, that was awesome!! I think you are right on with this. I too would rather have more time with my family than all the money in the world. Even when things look grim, there is a bright side...and your way of looking at it is definitely the bright side!! I love it.