The Grind :

Hi Hi Y’all,

I think I’ve met another situation where appreciation doesn’t equal the true understanding of emotional strength in a situation until one’s been in it before: the grind.

I grew up in a middle class family with typical crazy ass middle class problems. My biggest worries were always emotional and based on social dynamics. It’s the sort of crazy that seems particularly less of a problem for those of lower economic status. Where, food, shelter and education tend to be the more prominent concerns. I’m not going to sit here and lie and say I’m approaching that line. Mostly due to fear of a verbal smack down from a friend the first time my thoughts started to head in that direction.

What I will tell you is that for the first time I really am participating in needing to grind through to maintain a semblance of your former economic status.

Let me explain:

(1) Many people know the roots of many of my issues stem from family. This will not ever change. However, there is a way to relieve some of the stress in its most basic attachment, money dependency. If you cut strings that hold you dependent you can find room to breathe. The thought alone is nice, but it isn’t an immediate practical step for the majority kids in my possession. We were never taught to work, budget, or accept basic life style choices others have had to make.

(2) This is were the transition phase starts. Research on what you are exactly dependent on begins. Calculations are made and beautiful word documents created to try and summarize your life by numbers. From there you look at that scary truth and start to try and formulate a plan to afford to pay them. You get your first proper part time job. You start side hustles or free lance work here and there to get the few extra bits of cash. You even maybe get more than one credit card so you can do a new form of balancing act.

(3) Now, we’ve arrived at stage three. You’ve been really at this for awhile. You can sort of do the routine, but it isn’t perfect yet. Your life has become multiple part time jobs/freelancing, school and work comes first mentality, some of your old enjoyments are overpriced unnecessary goods and your new tittle has become minimum payment queen. Your natural 700s credit score is in the 600s because of choices you made to learn how to be an adult… Stage 3.

(4) This is what I mean when I say I am more than just appreciative towards those who are in the grind, because I am now in one as well. It doesn’t matter that my voice is cracked as hell, that my school assigned me a shit ton of work, that I wanted to write a book, or that I wanted to spend more time on myself. If it doesn’t fit in with the flow of the grind of the week it doesn’t fit in. It’s a no.

Yes, I am luckier than most. Yes, I probably shouldn’t ever say I have to live this life when I have people who will be there to catch me when I fall. HOWEVER, what I can say is that I am living a life that makes me my own person. I am living the life an adult. These tough decisions and annoying thought processes are now on my shoulders.

Living your life independent of attachments to others or of your own insecurities is a challenge. I think it is important to take a moment to realize all that you are doing to achieve the goal. You have to admit sometimes it sucks, your tired and you don’t want to do it. Then you need to be proud of yourself for still showing up for the fight.

That’s the grind…

Getting up over and over again.

Ain’t going to let anything stop me from standing up in the morning.

I.L. Knight

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Working Man Blues – Merle Haggard

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