The Only Way to Win is Not to Play the Game

There are times that I feel like maybe, just maybe, I might be getting ahead. As in, getting ahead in my life. Like I might have my shit under control and it might be possible to actually do all the things and be happy and successful and not have a bank account that feels like an empty piggy bank with one measly penny rattling around when you shake it.

Everyone can all laugh now. Because of course, this game of life is very clearly two steps forward, one step back all the damn time. And sometimes, when you’re clinging to those little successes, its really hard not to feel defeated.

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Yeah, okay. I suppose if you can find the sunny side to everything, good for you. I get it, I’m only defeated if I think I’m defeated. Count your blessings. Attitude is everything. Blah blah blah.

But my blessings and my attitude aren’t going to change the fact that the car place is telling me that I need new brakes. And an inspection. And I have a nail in my tire. And “oh we can’t pass inspection until we fix your brakes.” And “Yeah its 5 months overdue you have to get it done, we have no idea how you haven’t been pulled over.” And “Yes it will cost 5 million dollars and we must do it all stat.”

Defeat. I’m literally living paycheck to paycheck. The job that I have pays peanuts; but it keeps me from zeroing out and being able to have a bit of wiggle room. It does not put me in a position of being able to pay for car repairs. And when you combine that with the fact that my battle with PC for money may likely be reaching a point of stalemate, a point where I just give up because I cannot afford to keep fighting a liar or the ends will not justify the means…well. Its hard not to feel like this.

Its hard to not feel incredibly bitter about money. I understand that it is not everything, that its the root of all evil and mostly the root of the quest for power and when you’re dead, no one cares anyhow. But Jesus Christ. You need money to live! I’m not even talking about the extra and the fun and the nice things. I’m talking about the basics like food, shelter and clothes.

There was a point in time when I would have just grumbled and swiped my debit card. And gone about my day and night as planned. Instead, I blinked back tears at the car dealership and debated whether I should attend my girls night out because it meant spending $27 on dinner and drinks. The guilt rises you don’t deserve that if you can’t even pay for a car repair!

And there was a time that I didn’t have to worry about money because I was mistakenly led to believe that we had it. When in reality, he had it and I was foolish enough to believe that “love” and a marriage certificate meant it was both of ours.

Lesson learned: never again will I combine finances with someone else. Considering I have none, this should be relatively easy. Ha ha ha.

My lawyer constantly reminds me that its not about winning or losing (yes my lawyer says this) but its how you play the game. And when your opponent plays unfairly, sometimes it is better to bow out with dignity. Move away from it, wipe the slate clean, and start a new story. Accept that the only way to have “won” was to have never played the game in the first place.

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