Why am I up at 3:00 AM? I only slept 6 1/2 hours and I am wide awake. It’s Mom. That wonderful women who raised me in ways that certainly can be questionable as far as parenting is concerned. After my alcoholic of a dad left our home when I was at the ripe age of 12, Mom found it difficult to bare the fact that there is another woman in her man’s life. Although she managed to get by with returning to the work field our lives had changed. I certainly didn’t miss the midnight beatings Mom took when Dad returned home after a hard night of drinking, nor the lack of attention I received from him. What I did miss was the fact that there was always food on the table and although we lacked in other ways we weren’t hungry. After dad left Mom would cry herself to sleep at night for what seemed like years. She tried desperately to discover love once again and I watched man after man move through our lives. She even took a chance and simply took off to California to marry a man who it turned out was already married.
My younger sister has lived with Mom most of her adult life as they have always leaned on each other to make ends meet in this challenging world. Mom loves to cook as it is here way of showing love to all she interacts with. She took on breast cancer last year and met it head on with a relentless attitude that it would not kill her. She won that battle but now faces a new one. As a simple soul she has never been good with handling money at all. It seems to leave her life as quickly as it comes in. Being retired she is on a fixed income and has no other choice but to handle it frugally, but I just don’t believe she knows how and if she does she simply refuses to do so. My sister is struggling herself with the loss of a job six months ago. Without a waitress job that provided her so well she finds herself now working in construction until another job appears for her. She is almost 50 years old which is close to the age many get out of the field of construction. They are both struggling and it is breaking my heart.
As a young man I found myself in a position of both father and big brother. I worked and provided for our family even while still in school. It was difficult to take on such a roll but what other choice was there. Even beyond my early days there were so many times I found that there was a need and I always managed to find resources for Mom. Today as I am fighting to provide for retirement myself I have too become a very simple soul. I have put a plan in place to ensure that I can count on self reliance in retirement and maybe leave behind an inheritance for my grandchildren. It takes hard work and dedication at this time in life but I am determined to make it happen.
I wrote a check out this morning and sent it Mom’s way once again. I am a good man and try to help out, but at the same time I have my own dreams and aspirations. I have my daughter’s wedding to pay for this fall. I feel guilty for not being in a position to lend better support for mom. Am I being greedy or responsible? I want to help but at the same time I don’t want to help.
Sometimes I want to scream out about the life Mom has lead as through the years she could have simply put just a little bit on money aside each week and found herself in a much better place today. She always took on the attitude that life was about so much more than that. Her lack of planning is a direct result of the position she is now in. Even today she has no direction and takes on each day with the attitude that everything will be OK. It was this same attitude I saw in her when we were younger and found ourselves moving from apartment to apartment year in and year out. Each time it was my grandfather who stepped forward with anger and a check in hand. My Grandfather ended up passing away in debt and many of the dreams he had for retirement were washed away through the cost of living that his own retirement could not support.
Throughout life we all lend ourselves in the act of helping other’s. It’s what we do and family is always in the front of this line. On the other hand each one of us bears the responsibility of not only taking care of ourselves, but also putting aside enough for the future. I thoroughly believe that all it takes is just 10% of your earning throughout your lifetime to provide for 100% of retirement. Learn the ways of minimalism and simple living and find a way to putting away that 10%. I learned that just by giving up smoking I could accelerate my rate of getting out of debt. There are so many other ways and avenues to investigate in your own life.
Yesterday was a good day in the life of this 55 year old battling Type II Diabetes. A protein shake for breakfast followed by a bowl of assorted berries, a salad with my favorite blend of Virgin Olive Oil and Balsamic with a burger cut up on the side, and dinner with a plate of cooked garden fresh spinach and a crab cake all shined through for providing me with a wonderful fasting glucose test this morning. Taking the day off from working out yesterday was a good decision as my body needed the rest. With my lack of sleep last night I am taking it easy with my leg workout this morning.
Blood Sugar- 102, Body Weight- 186.0
Bowflex – LEGS
Squats- 220- 15, 15
Calf Raises- 220- 15, 15
Leg Extensions- 200- 15, 15