France when you might be dying!

Peggy asked if I thought she would still go to France if I have cancer. I said she should consider the prognosis. Her response was that there was no way she would go. I was so surprised that I didn’t think to ask if she would stay home to support me, or because she would be too bummed to enjoy France. I wouldn’t want her here unless the prognosis was grim. I would miss her, but no more than I would miss her anyway; and I would be awfully sorry about all those nonrefundable reservations.

Peggy and I differ in that I am much more likely to make decisions based upon money. I love watermelon, yet I didn’t buy a single melon last year because the prices were too high. Peggy was horrified. “You’re worth the money,” she argued with generous intent, but with logic that reminded me of a television commercial. “What does my worth have to do with overspending on a watermelon?” I countered. “You could just as easily argue that I am worth saving the money.”

When I spend big, it’s on non-consumables like tools or that $1,750 bike I bought last year. I’m not cheap; I’m frugal. I’ve been this way as long as I can remember, and I have no desire to change. Peggy is also frugal, but not as much. If she weren’t frugal, we wouldn’t be together. She would be out spending like the average American, and I would be home packing my bags and separating our finances. She does have her indulgences, but we’ve worked it out so that I can live with them. Her skiing—like her trip to France—comes out of common funds. Her buttons are another matter because the expense is ongoing. When she began spending what I considered a lot of money, we agreed that, for every dollar she spent, I got one dollar for myself. Her “dollars” are displayed in cases; my dollars are in mutual funds.

She argues that the stock market could crash tomorrow and I could lose everything, whereas she has already gotten enormous enjoyment from her buttons, and is unlikely to lose them. She might be right, but then again, a fire or a flood could take her buttons while my funds would go on doing their compound interest thing. Maybe I don’t enjoy greenbacks as much as enjoys buttons, but they still give me a warm feeling. Money alone can’t buy security, but I never heard anyone say he felt more secure without it.

Peggy is away (reluctantly, due to my health) on her annual “Girls’ Weekend Out,” and I’m cleaning house in preparation for surgery. Hernia surgery is low risk, yet I had a friend who died on the table, so I’m doing a more thorough job than usual. Things like cleaning out closets, rearranging cabinets, putting contact paper in drawers, backing up computer files, updating lists, and getting rid of unneeded items. Peggy literally doesn’t know how to operate the washer and dryer, and she is all but computer illiterate, so I know I would be missed.

Yet, she would survive, I suppose, which is more than I might do if she died. I can’t say for sure because I haven’t crossed that bridge. I just know that I always hold suicide as an option, and that she does not. This is another of our differences.


All Consuming said...

I've been flitting through your blog, but then thought I should the beginning. Peggy sounds like my husband finance -wise and you me! It's the way I was brought up, I know that for a fact, my father is just the same and I very much take after him. I have never been in debt and I never will be if I can help it, my husband has no issue with my frugality, which is entirely necessary, really, it is, but, if it were up to him he'd just spend on a day to day basis, though not extravagantly even at that. I spend on a decade to decade one I guess heh.

I have no problem with suicide if necessary, and I’m guessing you know what I mean by that from what you have said. But it’s a discussion that once had with a spouse, well, you know where you both stand, if indeed you have been able to speak of it in the first place, which a lot of people who would like to, but hide from. I’m all in favour of suicide pacts myself, once ye both be of an age and either of you of such an infirmity/in never ending pain/ terminal illness….., if I honestly could not bear to go on, or he felt he could not, then, bearing in mind we have no children, (which alters things somewhat significantly depending on their age), then I can see no reason why a joint, consenting leaving shouldn’t be perfectly legal. But then I also know that, the fact that I have come so very close to dying in hospital twice, and have lived with pain for so many years makes me view things rather differently to those who have not.

I’m all joy here aren’t I heh. I find your blog really interesting, and I admire your honesty about your day to day life. I cannot be so honest in mine, my friends who read my blog would become too distressed were I to catalogue the grim side too much, though to be fair, I view my blog as an escape in many ways, from the mundane, the…well as I said ‘grimness’, not to be ignored mind you, I can grumble like a bugger, pardon my French.

Snowbrush said...

My friends don't even know I have a blog, and I would guess a lot of bloggers are that way. I browse blog after blog that have no followers and no comments. That said, I send much that is in my blog to people I know because I very much enjoy having penpals (I even write to my next door neighbor).
Years ago, I read of an old couple who put their affairs in order (even down to doing their dishes and making their bed), and wrote a farewell note. Then they drove into the country, and the husband shot his wife and himself. I admired that. I've tried to picture Peggy and me doing that, but I don't know that she would want to, and I do know that it would be excruciating for me to pull the trigger on her if she were unable to do it for herself.