Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas
Most stress is caused by three things: family, money, and family with no money.
Another beautiful week spreads before us. The leaves are turning. Nature in all her splendor is here to be enjoyed before the trees are bare. Unripe tomatoes are still on the vine. How much longer can I leave them there? The squirrels are busy getting ready for winter. There is always winter coming and we must prepare for it. Winter comes not just as a yearly season, but also comes in our lives, hearts, and relationships.
Will we be ready when winter comes should always be top of mind. Does anyone escape winter in their lives even if they escape it in their climate? When you grow up on a farm winter is a bigger thing than it is in the city. Winter in the city is annoying with icy roads but we go to the grocery store and almost the same array of vegetables and fruits are there for the buying. The farmer has to be ready for winter not just for the family, but for all the animals that live on the farm. An unprepared farmer will wreak havoc on the livestock and most might not make it to spring.
They say you can take the girl out of the country but you can’t take the country out of the girl. This is true, we are who we are and where we grew up plays a huge role in that. Some of us may hate that our origins follow us, some of us love it. We are who we are and we need to embrace it, all of it. Whatever trials and tribulations we endured have colored our lives. Some of us have had relatively few trials and tribulations but our life is what it is. It is ours to make the best of, to grow into the best people we can be. Can we live our lives as a blessing to ourselves and others?
You never suffer from a money problem, you always suffer from an idea problem. Robert H. Schuller
We are all contributing to the tapestry of life and we have choices going forward, we can’t change what is behind us. If we are proud of our past or not, it cannot be changed. There is dignity in going forward a better person regardless of the mistakes we’ve made in the past. There is dignity in being innocent of things we’ve been accused of. There is dignity in addressing wrongs we’ve done, making amends, and going forward better. There is no dignity in being guilty of doing wrong even if we are thought innocent.
We hear stories of people who were power of attorney for someone whose money seems to have disappeared. Upon closer inspection, it may be shown that the power of attorney did not squander the money or use it in any nefarious ways. It might have been invested at a lower rate than it was being spent at and the money was spent on who it should be spent on. If the books are opened the power of attorney may be exonerated, or maybe not.
Money causes a lot of problems in families. Dishonesty causes more. We can be dishonest in many ways. We can be dishonest by not dealing with the finances realistically and expecting they will outlast the person whose finances they are. Many of us put on a good show but if we revealed our finances to each other we might not be as proud of the cold hard facts. As parents age, these cold hard facts have to be faced. If one sibling thinks there is lots of money and another knows there is not, fingers might be unfairly pointed.
It might be best when a power of attorney has to be appointed to look after a parent’s affairs that everyone knows exactly what the situation is at that time. If we are open about the situation there will be fewer problems in the future. Inheritance, the expectation of an inheritance, and being disinherited cause real problems in families. Open, honest discussions and disclosure about money before someone dies sounds like the best way forward. Since we never know when we or anyone else will die we should be open about our finances with those who will be impacted. We should look after what needs to be looked after. We should be, but are we ready for winter?
Money is a tool. Used properly it makes something beautiful; used wrong, it makes a mess. Bradley Vinson
The greatest gifts you can give your children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence. Denis Waitley
A man can’t make a place for himself in the sun if he keeps taking refuge under the family tree. Helen Keller
Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.
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