Instant Gratification // Musings

>> Monday, October 2, 2017

Growing up in a small town before the internet became a big deal, I generally accepted that items I wanted/needed would take weeks to arrive and that most things I wanted/needed to do would close by 5PM.

It was a time of slow living. Simplicity.

There was no such thing as instant gratification. I remember browsing through the movie store, for example, looking at VHS after VHS. Finally, I’d arrive on the movie I wanted to see . . . only to find that all copies were checked out and I’d have to wait at least another week to see it.

24-hour grocery stores

Streaming television/movies

Amazon Prime’s shipping

Walk-in clinics open on Sundays

It sounds silly, but these things amaze me. They still do even years after first being exposed to them. I remember leaving home to go to college in Ithaca, which isn’t some big metropolis, and getting delivery calzones at 2AM. Can you imagine! That’s the middle of the night, and I could have hot food brought to me while I was in my pajamas. We won’t even go into the freshly baked cookies you could get at that hour. I’d sometimes drive to Wegmans just to walk around the empty store at midnight because I found the whole novelty of it just so incredible.

Small town girl right here. That’s me. Born and raised. Fifth generation, too. But life is so different now. And this applies even to my small hometown. I cannot even begin to tell you how Amazon would have changed my life. If a store didn’t have X, Y, or Z that you needed . . . we still joke that the owner would say “well -- long exhale -- we can order it in” and it would take seemingly weeks to arrive. As if by horse or something.

But, 2017. We can have basically anything we want, whenever we want it. Sure, some things are still more difficult to get. (Polar’s Unicorn Kisses sparkling water, anyone? Which, by the way, I found here!) And there are times when demand is high. Instant gratification is a great thing -- at least sometimes.

Lately, though, I’ve been grappling with how to bring up my girls in an age when they have access to so much. (PS: Has anyone read Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World? Wondering if it’s worth adding to the library list.)

I would love for them to feel that immense satisfaction of when you have waited so very long for something. It’s this painful place -- the waiting. I think it’s important. For one, it makes the reward so much sweeter. I feel like we’re missing that so much these days. Not that I want to give up any of it. Nope. I’ve become far too accustomed.

But I feel like always getting what we want (even if it’s just immediate rental of a movie) leads to this feeling that we NEED/WANT so much more. We’re ever-addicted to the feeling of joy, however fleeting it may be. And to rarely if ever have that waiting? I just wonder what that does to a person and his/her expectations out of life.

I feel like a lot of my homesteading efforts are also efforts to recapture those old times when things didn’t come so easy. To get that whole feeling of fulfillment and satisfaction again. Many of you were so kind to point out that convenience (from my last post) isn’t always such a bad thing. I totally agree with you.

When most everything is made for our convenience, I’m not so sure. But here I am today with another one of those aimless, thought-circling posts. I’ve been thinking a lot lately, so I suppose it’s good I’ve had time for that.

I’ll be back soon with some new meals that we’ve been making! Meal planning is much easier when you brach out and get excited about new recipes, right?!

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