First World Problems

I sponsored a child last week with Plan (a charity I highly recommend).  I didn’t select a gender or a country trusting that Plan would set me up with whatever they needed for their aims of sponsoring children.  I received the details of the child on paper at the end of last week, and as I flipped through it all I noticed that Plan highly recommended that I write to my sponsored child and could do so electronically, including attaching photos.  It was made clear that any photo submitted should not show signs of materialism, and that my letter to my sponsored child should be about things we have in common in order to not upset the child with the things that they may never have.

This, of course, all makes perfect sense, and so I started thinking about the things that we have in common.  I am growing some vegetables in my garden for us to consume, not exactly something we have in common because if my crop fails, I can just go to the supermarket and buy food, whereas my sponsored child and his family and community will face a much harder time if their crops fail.  I have a family, he has a family, so we have that in common.  I have been to school and he is going to school, so we can talk about school subjects, learning goals, and where those things can take us as we grow up/older.

There was a point to mentioning this, which has slipped my brain, but that’s ok, it may or may not come back to me as I continue to ramble on about things.

On Sunday my computer catastrophically went splodge.  My husband was quite upset about the PC dying as it happened on his watch, so to speak, as I was out grocery shopping at the time.  I shrugged and said it was ok, which surprised him as he thought I’d be upset.  My PC has been giving signs of throwing in the towel for a while now, and clearly Sunday was the day for everything to fall over.  I will be upset if the dying of the computer takes out one of my HDDs (the one with all the photos on it), but everything else is backed up, or available elsewhere.  I was planning to buy a new PC with my tax return anyway, this just brought everything forward by a month or so.

So this weekend I’ll hold the brief funeral service before taking the PC (minus the valuables – HDD, RAM and graphics card) to the great recycling centre.  We’ll farewell the PC in the style it was accustomed to living – perhaps not with the all nighters I made it do regularly.

I’m typically a calm person, I have a very high frustration tolerance and don’t often get frustrated with things, I am resigned to bad traffic, delayed or cancelled trains, that phone call just as I’m leaving the office, and stuff.  That doesn’t mean that I’m never frustrated or angry, because that does happen, but just that it often takes more to make me angry than it does some of the other members of my household.  And as well, if anger isn’t going to be useful (ie being angry for 2 weeks while my computer is replaced is a bit much), then anger is not the response I typically choose.  Feminist flash rage happens on a daily basis.

It’s not that I think to myself that there are others in the world who are far worse off than me (as I think that’s a terrible thing to do to yourself) when something like my computer dies (or my house floods).  I just process it differently and put it in the bucket of things I cannot control so will not spend time fretting about.  I’m privileged enough to have sufficient savings to be able to borrow against to replace my computer – even if it is going to take 2 weeks for the custom build I’m getting.  I’m privileged enough to be able to typically access reliable public transport, have a relatively flexible workplace, have a reliable car and to live with others who will hear my frustration and anger when it is present, whether it be about the rantings of ill-informed political commentators or many things failing to do what they should at once.

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