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November 13th, 2014

 

 

I’ve only got $20 in my pocket.

 

Literally. I’ve got a $20 bill in my pocket because unfortunately the rest of my cash, along with my laptop, was stolen last week. (If the thief is reading this, I hate you.)

 

Needless to say, I’ve had some pretty bad luck this semester.

 

I do have some money in my bank account. But, it is now virtually inaccessible because I need to purchase a new laptop and pay off that car accident I mentioned a couple weeks ago. That means the winter boots I was hoping to splurge on soon are no longer in my future. Dang.

 

The good news is that I still have more than enough shoes to keep my feet nice and cozy. I still have a closet full of clothes, half of which haven’t even seen the light of day in the past six months. I still have my bed, my books, my cellphone, food – basically, I still have everything I need to survive.

 

Long story short, I’m still incredibly blessed. In fact, I’m quite spoiled. I hadn’t even realized how spoiled I am until I lost my laptop and wallet. This has predictably turned out to be a hefty serving of humble pie.

 

You see, I’ve always been extremely well-provided for by my family. I always knew this while I was growing up, but I never fully appreciated it.

 

I’ve participated in countless service projects throughout my high school and college years. These experiences have put me face-to-face with some of the most despairing people living in this country.

 

I’ve acknowledged and reflected on that fact that I have always had so much while these people have so little.

 

Yet, even in consideration of my fortune, I’ve always gone on living life in the same fashion – constantly consuming and giving back very little. Despite the fact that I have so many resources at my fingertips, I still have always constantly craved more.

 

That’s why losing something valuable is actually one of the best things that could have happened to me this year. It’s been a bona fide blessing in disguise not only because it has reminded me to count my blessings and remember the important things in life, but it’s also served as a lesson in resourcefulness.

 

I’ve discovered that, although it’s annoying, I don’t actually need a laptop to survive. There’s actually a building on campus that has computers AND books that you can use for free! Who knew?

 

Sure, I can’t sit around in my apartment wasting time on Facebook and Pinterest now, but when it comes to my grades, that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

 

Weirdly enough, I’ve actually been less stressed out since my laptop has been stolen because I get my homework done quickly and efficiently while I’m on campus and then have nothing else to worry about for the rest of the night.

 

Also, the fact that I now have very little spending money really isn’t as bad as I imagined it would be. Since I do work in the mall, it is a little painful to see people walking around and buying cool things that I know I won’t be able to have. But, when I go home and see all of the random, useless objects sitting around my room collecting dust, I’m reminded that I really don’t need to buy any more things.

 

Plus, I feel pretty proud of myself when I’m resourceful and make something out of nothing. Macklemore’s “Thrift Shop” was my personal anthem for awhile just because it feels so good to look hot in an outfit that you only spent $5 on. If you don’t believe me, go poke around in Goodwill or Avalon Exchange and then come back and tell me I’m wrong.

 

The way I see it, we already live in a disposable society. From paper, to phones, to computers, we constantly throw our old things away to get new ones, even if the old things were working just fine. Billions of pounds of trash are just floating around in the ocean, and I’ll bet that $20 dollar bill in my pocket that about 90 percent of it really isn’t trash at all. It’s just the stuff we decided we didn’t need anymore because we saw something else we wanted.

 

I’m not going to die because I lost my laptop and wallet. In fact, when put into the proper perspective, I’ve barely suffered at all.

 

When it comes to saving money and making ends meet, I’ve developed enough skills to be resourceful and still be as successful as before. I think now is a good time to put those lessons to use.