I grew up in poverty in the mountains of southern France.My father was a factory worker and my mother was a cleaning man.
We were fortunate to live in the mountains: fishing, hunting and natural resources from the woods picking, gardening and Canning helped us a lot.
We could live well thanks to the riches of nature, and I am thankful for that, even though it meant a lot of work.
Housework was our second job, also for us children.
Wood chopping or doing extra chores like babysitter or handicrafts, fishing or hunting, we always had something to do.
In a sense I’m glad I grew up there instead of in a big city: Despite our poverty, we were actors of our lives, and not passive victims of the system, depending on a benefit or food bank.
It was heavy and I can’t emphasize how much hard work it was, but we didn’t starved, we didn’t really feel the poverty in physical or stigmatizing terms.However, the stress and pressure that my father faced when he was busy about bills that had to be paid or the car to be replaced.
Even a brand new pair of slippers was a perk to be happy with.
I didn’t have much toys, and it didn’t really matter, because, haha, I didn’t have time for it.If I had time to play, I would build a hut in the mountains, build a dam near the stream or just on the bike or in the big ones.
The only time I really got frustrated about money was when I was offered to go along on school trip to Germany.I think it is the only time I ever got up against my father, and I think the first and only time he talked with me as having an equal, with an adult.
He told me, “Celine, I know you are fascinated by learning languages and I would like to assist you in this, but I just can’t afford it.The trip is 1300 Francs (180Th), and this month we have to pay 16000 Francs for your mother’s dentures… And I don’t even know how to pay for it. “
I accepted the fate and wished that my mother would really enjoy her new dental prosthesis.
After the death of my father, not long after, we lived in greater poverty than ever.My mom was a disaster with money and if she had it she gave it out to silly things, like a brand new car or a motorcycle, or clothes for herself, two sizes too small because she was planning to lose weight.
And by that time we lived in the city.Food was hard to get. Sometimes we only had old hard bread and sugar clumps. (Sugar rolls 芒 鈧?娄 food for the Poor)
Or the old pot Of jam that my grandmother had given us.We had to create the fungus from the jam before we went to eat it.
My teenage years were really terrible: I had two outfits, both ugly and almost broken.I lived in a crappy apartment that was in a building that was so decayed that there were giant mushrooms growing on the foundation beams and the floor of the apartment bent far below the walls when we walked into the living room.
My mother was in total depression and taught me to steal food from the grocery store.I had to be very inventive and take a lot of risks to feed my little brother and sister. There were only two rules: we do not steal from people and my mother has no idea that we are stealing. (She feared that social work would take us away).
I learned where I can find food in the city.I have learned to knock at bakeries or delicatessen items to ask for unsold/old food. The homeless knew me, and they gave me tips on where to find food, and yes, sometimes I even searched for food in the garbage of the supermarkets.
Remember: What you don’t kill will make you stronger.It is sad but true.
I also learned to find antiques or valuable vintage items and sell them with profit.Small chores.
What frustrated me most to life in poverty was not so much the circumstances.I was never the kind of girl that would complain about the lack of “stuff”. (Except books. Books were a necessity, just like food that was. And that’s why I’d steal them from the grocery store.)
No, what really frustrated me was social inequality.
I could not get the same access to education, culture and the like as the other children.I wanted to go to a really nice school, but I just couldn’t. My mother couldn’t afford to send me there. I always loved learning and felt smarter than my classmates. But in the end I had to search for work and I never studied.
That was the big problem with poverty: the feeling that you are stuck in it and that you have no chance to get out.
I ended up coming out of poverty.I look back with bitterness. Sometimes being strong by overcoming difficult life situations is not really the best for someone. My family is still proud to live in difficulties, not to be spoiled. I simply cannot return to that. I have worked hard to get out of it, I can’t cope with it anymore.
I felt not necessarily poor.Quite disadvantaged. I had a job and deserved just above minimum wage. For surcharges I did not qualify, all the attacks I deserved just enough for.
I worked so I could stay in my house.Money for groceries, there was some, but that initially went to my son. With the little I had I went to the cheapest supermarkets and I took care that I had healthy food for him for the whole week, and then he wore diapers so in that sense he took some more.
If there was anything left of the food then I ate that, but most I just froze in so I sure knew there would be some.All the while I was thankful that we just had shelter, but it was hard to go to work, knowing that you didn’t like anything about it. But then I thought again, we have gas water and light and a roof. That’s more than some people have. I don’t give up, I just keep working hard, that’s the right way.
The worst thing I found was that I had nothing to eat at work.Often I did not go for lunch, but sometimes people said come along and then I went and sat down there, because I couldn’t afford to pay lunch. 芒 鈧?虄You Don’t Eat? 芒 鈧劉 asked people then. Then I lied but that I was not hungry or I said 芒 鈧?虄i’ve just eaten so I’ll just socialize at Zitten芒 鈧劉.
Money for new clothes was not there.In My shoes were holes, but I thought 芒 鈧?虄those sitting at the bottom, so that you see Not芒 鈧劉. Clothes that broke, needle and thread made them again quite.
As I said, I felt not necessarily poor.Especially at home not actually. You just roams with the straps you have. At my work it was harder because there also everyone talked 芒 鈧?虄i’ve been there over the weekend, eating out again, new clothes (complaining: my closet is so full) 芒 鈧劉. I could do it quite well, but not even for myself, but more as a mother, that I could not go to zoo with my son or buy a footpeg on for him.
Eventually I learned from that period only to appreciate the smallest and also learned that there are many things you can do that are free and fun.I am perhaps most grateful for this, because this has really changed me as a person.
I wrote this story from my perspective, although my husband was still there (later we divorced) he took little part.Later It turned out that he certainly deserved 600 euros per month more than he told me.
When I found out, I laughed and I felt relieved.Because I managed to make the best of it despite everything, I did not get strange, I was there for my son. I’m not running away. In addition, I went away with two beautiful life lessons, no maybe three, never give up, appreciate everything you have and listen to yourself-that he did not dent, of course I knew for a long time, I thought it was more important to give my son what he needed , but that mistake with such a person to go, I will of course never make it again in the future.
Today we live in a small but nice little house, every penny that comes in we know where it goes.I am happy to earn a little more, all the money that remains after the fixed charges we stop in (digital) pots. Now if a shoe is broken, I can just buy a new pair.
That also feels like mega luxury for me, but I still wear them until the rain comes through the bottom and then.. Only when the sun shines:D
Poverty is not something that you will understand if you do not make it yourself.It requires a very different kind of man to get you through the people who do keep money every day while you can find little to no rest.
When my father chose another way, my mother, sisters and I stayed behind.I quickly noticed how different the world could be suddenly.
Back in time, where alimony was still in its infancy, mothers had been entrusted with her own income.To let her children grow up as carefree as possible. Because who does not want to let children grow up carefree?
With great success, later I learned to understand why we always stumbled along the potato fields with a stroller.As much fun as we found it to be picking and harvesting potatoes, carrots and apples, so sadly it was for her.
No Penny, in the cold in winter, nice and cosy with Z芒 鈧劉 n all in mothers listening to her stories.Her beautiful voice in character of the book she had chosen this time.
Later, you learn to understand why things were and are different.But so often you also tell someone, the feeling you will never be able to convey.
I wish no one.It requires a different kind of man, to go you oo the edge of the financial abyss.
Everything is relative.
If your acquaintances and brothers and relatives are in the assistance, and you get a legacy of up to 6,000 euros, you will feel tremendously rich!Wow, the guy with money!….
If all your brothers and acquaintances earn 3 or 4 tons per year, and you pick up the 1.5…Then you feel a miserable failure.
Wealth is also relative.You are as rich as you feel.
If you deal with many long-term obligations (payments, mortgage, etc.) then you feel that as liabilities, no voluntary expenses.That voluntary, if there is in your spending, makes you feel rich.
This can be 3-high behind, without car or flight holidays.
In My study time I was poor.I often ate white rice with that cheap warm-up sate, wore my shoes and clothes and pulled out what I needed at a second-hand shop. What I earned went largely to the rent.
In contrast, I had the freedom and tranquility to learn, my friends had been around me so lonely I was not.At times when my shoes went yawn or I couldn’t afford to pay the groceries I felt miserable. Yet I grew up as a person. So for me, poverty is only bad if I can no longer develop.
In retrospect I realise that I have completed it without study debt, and that has actually been a good start.Whether it was worth it? I have done everything myself, it has taught me a lot.
I grew up poor, but never noticed anything at that time.
My clothes were always too big or too small: my trousers were bought 15cm too long and folded down and you could see all the folds after 2 years of how much I had grown.
As 4 years old at 4h in the morning and 2 hours steps, so that I could ride with someone else’s parents to school (cold winters!)
Clothing was never thrown away: Everything was patched with a different piece of fabric.(and a long trousers was simply ‘ transformed ‘ into a short)
Leftovers of soap were always thrown in a large bucket with a little water in the basement: In the summer you had liquid soap to clean the floor outside.
Father had 3 jobs and mother 2, but I never missed them: at every crucial moment of my life they were there.
Although I now realise that we used to be really poor and I am much better now, I miss the feeling of togetherness, warmth, family,…
Arm is a double feeling: it used to be a shortage of money, now I’m missing out on all the beautiful moments that just came because we had to survive with little!
EDIT: So I talk about the years ‘ 70 and ‘ 80:) NOT about World War II!
芒 鈧?艗poverty is in the concern 芒 鈧?Gerrit Zalm
No matter how much money you have, or how high your income is, you feel your arm if you have (substantially) less to spend than your environment, or if your needs are higher than what you can afford.
The moments that I felt most wealthy were often the moments when I had little to spend, but also had little material need, such as during a backpack trip in SO Asia in my student time or a low budget camping holiday in France.
In My first years as an entrepreneur I worked a lot more hours than my friends who had a corporate job.Not only worked its less, they had more vacation and earned 3芒 鈧?”5x more than me.
I had more to spend than in my student time, but felt much poorer.And that went to your self-image, your self-confidence, and doubting if I had made the right choice by saying my corporate job.
It is-certainly in the Netherlands-especially poverty relative to your environment..
Maybe I can answer the question from the other side.
Brings me back to m芒 鈧劉 N youth.Felt rich with F15:00 on m芒 鈧劉 n shelf. Not so much, but enough to know that I could just buy some of it if I wanted to. Even though that was small things. That gave me a sense of prosperity: the ability to.
Perhaps that wealth sees the presence of opportunities and poverty the absence thereof.
Ironish It is that once you have it saved you will lose the possibilities.I long stuck to the F15:00, tenacious to the possibilities. Found that of greater value than its use.
Still think so.
The emotion of poverty is an interpretation of man about the disposal of monetary and materialistic ability.
Although I have only 5 cents in my wallet yet I don’t wear the feeling of poverty.In contrast, I am richer than the person who possesses pecuniary wealth and materialistic ability.
Think about that.