I Want

Not many things.  I don’t mean that in a stupid “I don’t care about money I want to live in a cave in Norfolk dressed in bay leaves” kind of a way.  Besides anything, bay leaves are really quite sharp.  I mean…  Well, I had this conversation with my dad the other day and he said that most people do their work solely for money.  That the point of work was promotions and raises and that most people who say they do it for satisfaction are lying to themselves.  I said, mate, I am going into academia.  No chance of huge financial rewards, I reckon I am doin this for the love.  And he said yeah, that’s an exception.

It’s a bi-fold thing, not wanting much.  On the one hand it means I’m roughly guaranteed to be satisfied with what I’ve got.  I don’t want a flat-screen, an i-Pad, a Kindle, my own house, a phone with an app where an umbrella shoots out of the earphone socket when rain drops on it.  (I’m not saying I couldn’t do with a smart-phone).  And this might be unthoughtout idealism.  I do want holidays and I do want children, so eventually I will have to pluck myself out of this technologically unadvanced dreamstate in a rented flat in Holland with a caffetiere, 600 books and a box of peppermint tea and no TV.  I know.  For now, though, I don’t want a great deal and that’s quite a nice place to be because I can decide what I want to be/ do, before I decide what I want from that.

On the other hand, this generally translates as a lack of ambition.  When asked what I want to do besides read books I generally answer with a blank expression or through a veritable Niagara of tears, depending on the circumstances.  (Except at such times as I answer “Well I want to be a pilot and a teacher and a writer and also own a bookshop and sell teacakes when I’m old…”, of course).

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4 thoughts on “I Want

  1. I reckon most of us who’ve got out the other side of severe mental illness are like this. We just want to be content with our lives for a bit, before having to think of the “what next” and the “what am I going to have to do to pay the bills”. At some point, I would like to have more money so I don’t have to scrimp and save in order to buy shoes for my children. But, balancing that is the fact that when I’ve worked in the past, I’ve gotten severely depressed. Even in a job I loved, which suited my personality “quirks”, I couldn’t switch off at the end of the day and that led to stress which led to depression etc. So, although I want money to buy stuff, I want my health and happiness more. Some people would look at that as selfish; I’m on benefits because I can’t work without jeopordising my health (which translates into – when I get depressed I attempt suicide), but I appear absolutely “well” right now because I’m doing what I need to do in order to live a happy life…that might annoy some people, but not me!
    So go for it. Keep doing what you’re doing in order to stay well and enjoy your content periods!

    • Thanks for commenting. It’s really encouraging to hear that you’re doing well, doing better & stably off work. And you’re right- there are certain, basic things that are important to have, and one of them is clothes, and one of them is food, and one of them has to be contentment because without that (and especially with suicidal depression!!) the other things become meaningless. It’s more important to have stability than stuff. I never thought of that as being to do with mental illness until you said that but you’re right- if you’re used to being unhappy with anything, I guess you don’t have the same desire to own/ have everything, do you? Endless respect, by the way, for being a mum.

      I am really hoping that I can get to the point of contentment; I won’t feel guilty for doing what I need to stay well (I say that…of course I will, a bit, as don’t we all?!) & your comment’s made me think that maybe I can.

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