Friday, December 5, 2008

budget crunching

We are witnessing the worst recession in Modern Day. Not only are we weary of our financial situation, our health and stress level are also under a lot of scrutiny especially with the cold season affecting our immune systems.

I am highly aware of the circumstances around the world. Call me a news junkie, but the urge to read or watch news, has become an every day habit now. I take interest in the reality of matters, such as the very dire situation we are facing in our economy today. The three BIG automakers are still under negotiation with Capitol Hill for getting a bailout, making a desperate appeal to save their auto industries. The question that arises here is of moral and logical basis; is the poor management to be held responsible for such failures or are we to face this dilemma together, as an economy at whole?

Today's crisis has crawled into our households, having us fear unemployment, sickness, financial meltdown and perhaps paranoia thinking about job security at all times. How bright is our future? How much are we to sacrifice?
It's ironic to me how "sacrifice" is emphasized especially now to save ourselves from any more financial hardships, whilst in the Islamic religion the time of Eid-ul-Adha is the epitome of sacrifice proven by Hazrat Ibrahim when putting his own son's life at risk for the sake of God's will.
A sacrifice that puts shivers to my skin. How unimaginable could that be in today's age where the common man suffers from "cutting down" and living less comfortably? How nostalgic are we to continue living like spenders when the morale of sacrifice isn't practiced to its best intentions?

My point isn't to sacrifice on life itself, but my ramblings are trying to shed a reality to what we find most important; the materialistic gains of our well being in what we perceive as highly necessary when in truth, all of it is just a mere presentation. There are desires, wishes and dreams to fulfil and I fully agree with the optimists, as I am one of them, that there is one life to live so why not live it to the fullest? The matter concerning this philosophy is not the bigger-than-life living, it is the purpose of living we so often lose in this whirlwind of keeping up.

Sure. I have ambitions. I have dreams. Heck, there is so much I want from this one life that is granted to me, but in my spectrum of living -- a balance is achieved to put my wants and needs in clear view from one another; parallel to the beauty of life VS the achievements of life. Whether I am doing full justice to myself and my ambitions? I don't know.
One thing I know; I have never doubted myself of my capabilities. If I can't have it now, I will have it later. A confidence I carry - so full of conviction and realism, it already feels as if I am living in it.

A perfect example would be of that going to NY during Christmas time. I have always wanted to see the Big Apple with all its mesmerizing Christmas decorations, people walking on 5th street carrying shopping bags, their faces lit up with the inner joy of the holiday spirit, ice skating in Central Park in front of the giant tree. Maybe its "Serendipity" or "Home Alone" that has me in awe of this incredible city or maybe its the Dutch tourist in me that is eager to explore the magnificient States of America...there surely is an imagination, a sort of childish freedom attached to my visions that I KNOW will happen. If not today, there is always tomorrow.

My budget today is sealed in an envelope waiting for its calculated deduction to be written on the envelope as every purchase is made at the groceries or drug store. My budget knows no whining, it knows no greed, but basic necessities. My budget is kind to me and my household and forces me to be creative and careful at the same time. My budget appreciates me and will reward us of our savings to later on splurge and enjoy meaningfully. My budget keeps me intact of what is today.

Today is...
A rising of unemployment rate to 6.7 % . Next year? Probably worse.

Tomorrow? God knows.
Knock on wood. We are healthy.

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