Do you take for granted what you thought of as a luxury in your childhood or young adulthood?
As a child, I thought luxury would be having my own room, a lovely white-gowned wedding, my own apartment with my handsome husband, little children running around happily, peace in the world. I took for granted my college education, my ability to live in the dorm away from home, the diversity of people whom I was privileged to meet and to interact with. Luxury in college was a hot plate to prepare my own coffee, a kosher salami hanging from the fire escape sent to me by my grandfather, and most of all my English racer bicycle with a college license plate.
I took for granted the house in the suburbs, I was happy with my hand-me-down car when my husband bought himself a new one and luxury for me became time alone- to read, to think, to sit in the sun at the beach. Not that I didn't also shop for and love my designer handbag, my soft leather gloves and my cashmere sweater. From wishing for peace in the world, I became active in PTA, taught first graders, joined the Women's Political movement, luxury forgotten in the middle of life, rearing teenagers and continuing my education.
Luxury in my 50's became travel to exotic destiinations about which I had studied or read, guarded jealously by saving up my vacation time. My children were grown and on their own, I met my second husband and we enjoyed the freedom to live our lives the way we chose to do so.
Now that all of those goals have been attempted, achieved or discarded, I luxuriate in a sinfully soft bath towel after a shower in my bathroom when it is filled with sunlight. I luxuriate in the beauty of a sunrise as I walk early in the morning, or of a multi-hued sunset as I sip a glass of Prosecco--alone-- on my lovely patio. I observe the crowds pushing and shoving to purchase gifts for the holidays and I rejoice that I am now beyond that. I will devote my energies to working toward helping caregivers of Alzheimer diseased loved ones, to meeting new people who are on my wavelength and to enjoying my children and my grandchildren.