I had the cold touch of reality caress the back of my neck today.
It was a chance thing: a conversation that got me thinking, and in thinking got me to realize that in some ways while I am incredibly blessed at the moment, this all could disappear much quicker than I could possibly envision.
That gets the mind working, of course: How much are we paying now? If we got rid of debt, how much would we owe then? What do I have to have and what are really luxuries in my life? (Hint: Like most people, they are a lot less than I tend to think that they are.)
It was a needed reminder, of course. I got sloppy and happy over the last couple of weeks - a bonus and a retroactive pay adjustment will do that to you. Suddenly you feel flush and in control of things. Your plans tend to change a bit, the purse strings get loosened up.
And then the wind hits.
And then you get back on track to what you intended to accomplish this year in the first place. Because in this environment, banking on a career to carry you forward for the foreseeable future is a rather high stakes bet indeed. And one that I would rather face prepared than surprised.