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Aiming for the middle

I’ve been caught up in the recession. Super. A company that bills itself as “The World’s Biggest Engagement Store” won’t pay me the money it owes me. Here I’ve been writing about the joy and happiness of getting engaged with the sap and sentiment of the “perfect proposal”. Here I was selling happiness, hope and memories of a lifetime –and doing it well. And now I am going to have a tough time paying for Penelope’s schools. (I’m not going to say wedding; she’s 2.) It kind of kills the mood. It’s like getting engaged only to find out your betrothed unexpectedly reveals to you that they are, in fact, a member of the opposite sex.

This is a company that prides itself on its guarantees and customer satisfaction. It amazes me how companies brand themselves one thing to the public and engage in such unethical practices in private. You promise – I deliver - you pay. You’d think they could march off into a vault and at least send me the monetary equivalent in merchandise. They keep reassuring me with: we’ll let you know soon if we’ll pay you all of the money, some of it, or maybe none. I bet they’ll apply for bankruptcy with $80,000,000* of diamonds in the vault, leaving the little guy screwed.

My tears are not ones of joy.

If experiences like this make me cynical, a 35+ who has seen quite a lot, I wonder how it will affect our kids. What are they going to take away from the financial mess our country is in now? We’re screwing up their future not just in how much the government is spending but also in the trust factor being sucked out of our brains. And even if we don’t say it out loud, our kids will sense it. I can’t imagine our kids will work heart and soul for a company knowing that they is absolutely no company loyalty in turn. As Wall Street publicly shows us, the game will be how much can you take and how little can you give before the company screws you. Sure we can talk about the intrinsic joy of taking a job without the emphasis on financial motivation, but the lessons we’ve learned is that it won’t keep you in your home.

I hope we can turn this around on a large scale. I want my kid to be hopeful. I want her to believe she can have it all though I'm now hearing that you shouldn't tell your kids they can have it all. You should have them aim to achieve the middle. Then they have less chance of disappointment.

What do other moms think of that?

*My wildly guessed estimate