Huh. I made a Facebook note on this in July. I might as well copy/pasta it.
""Are you better off than you were 2 1/2 years ago?" I was asked this today, and had to stop and think for a minute. There's a lot wrong in the world today, and a lot the Obama administration has done (or failed to do) that I disapprove of. But the basic voter question "Am I better off now?"... I hadn't thought of it so simply before.
Actually, yes. I am. I think back to, say, about October of 2008. I was stumping for early voter registration, then for Obama, but had otherwise been unemployed besides that since I had graduated in June. I was living with my parents, and although they're AMAZING, I didn't enjoy it. I was depressed, I think I can admit now. I had almost no energy, no friends besides those from college whom I still talked with, and was considering signing up for the military because ALL of my job applications had gone nowhere. The "Get Out the Vote" campaign was a diversion at best, and even after working for a couple of months for them, I was only paid enough to barely cover my gas.
Flash forward to today. I'm employed now (2 jobs, in fact), I have health insurance, 6 months living expenses in my bank account in case I ever lose my job(s), and I've saved 10% of everything I've made for retirement. I have a girlfriend*, friends, I bought my own car (as opposed to my old 2005 Hyundai Elantra, which was a graduation gift). I have enough disposable income to travel during my vacations, up to MA last year, and again this summer, and I've gone out to CA twice (and once turned it into a week-long vacation while visiting my cousin).
Could things be better? Sure. I could be in shape. I could have gotten a promotion (although I've gotten two raises). I could have made more friends** (especially with my roommates leaving and two good friends moving out of state this week). I could have learned to make more thoughts without parentheses (you know you love them). But know what? I also could still be that unemployed guy living at his parents' house, battling depression and contemplating a military life not out of patriotism, but desperation. Things might not be great, but they certainly could be worse."
*I no longer have a girlfriend, since about August.
**I have made several new friends though!
Edited, Dec 12th 2011 2:08pm by LockeColeMA
Retired News Writer for the ZAM Network
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