No matter what I will never know what it is like to stare poverty in the face. I will never know what it is like to not have enough money to buy food for my family, to not live comfortably in a bed within a house with windows and doors. To be afraid that my child will get deathly sick, and I won't have the means to take care of him/her. I will never know what this is like.
I was born privileged...in the midst of a culture that understands fairness. In a culture that has pretty much every advantage there is in the world. I can visit any country that I want to without wondering if I will be able to get in, or if I will have to flee once again. I can buy anything at the store, or go out to eat when I don't feel like cooking. I was born knowing as a woman that I have a voice. I do not have to conform to men and I can stand up for my rights. Rights that I have always had, I have never had to defend them. Even when I am visiting places where women don't have those rights, I still do. I am still able to live my life with a voice. My voice has never been taken from me. My voice has never had to be disguised. I have always been able to say exactly what I feel with little or no consequences.
How often do I take for granted the fact that I have been born privileged? How often do I take for granted that I will always have a place to live, and food on the table. Even if I am in a job change, there are people that will always be able to provide for me, because they were also born privileged. Yes, we have worked for what we have, yes I have gotten into hundreds of dollars of debt, just to be where I am at. Never really earning enough to pay off loans that keep creeping up on me. But, if I am really honest, this is the least of my worries.
I am able to live comfortably. I still buy starbucks at least once a week, if not more often. I eat meat, and fresh vegetables almost every single day. I have a Kindle, Ipad and laptop. I live with running water and electricity. I ride on a bus to and from the mall, where I buy my groceries. There is nothing in this scenario that says I am suffering, yet I always want more.
I always want to have the best ipad...new clothes....and things that will make my life more comfortable. Why is this? When did I learn to want more. When did I learn to never be content with what I have. To always look for more?
How do I step back and see just how privileged I am?
I spent two years in the states. Two years being somewhat unhappy with my state of life, because life was very convenient. I was surrounded by family and friends, yet I found just about every reason to complain. I was able to choose from about 20 different churches, yet I couldn't seem to find a place to "fit in."
Here I am stuck out in the middle of nowhere and I find myself more grateful than ever before. The fact that I have internet, running water, and air con. I am so thankful that I spent the evening just hanging out and talking with a friend.
Why can't I see poverty when it is staring me straight in the face, everyday. Why can't I step outside of myself, and see just how lucky I am to have the bare necessities....but really so much more.
I hate debt, and money....but at least I had the privilege to get an education, and the means to pay it off eventually.
When I step outside the gate, and look around I see poverty. I see people working their butts off just to make a dollar, and I think...I will never be able to understand. I will never see clearly what it means to live their life...to walk in their shoes, and to live in poverty.