Article by Wendy McCance
The last post I had written was in regards to winning the lottery. Well, I didn’t win and I’m relieved. I know this is probably to most people a crazy statement and not what you would expect to hear, but I really started to think about the implications to winning the lottery.
After I had bought my ticket, I went home and had an enormously fun time talking about the what if’s of winning with my family. We discussed taking a vacation, helping out friends and family who were struggling and where we would like to live (on a lake). I was surprised at how little the kids would want to buy. My oldest wanted new clothes and shoes (not surprising as a 16-year-old). My second oldest just wanted a pool. She didn’t care about anything else as long as there was a pool to swim in. My youngest gave the most surprising wish. He wanted an iPod, nothing else, just an iPod. I know in general that a wish like a swimming pool is pretty extravagant, but it was just the simplicity of the answers. There was no long list of I want this or I need that. Later, after the kids had gone to sleep I got on the internet and looked at homes that would still be within the kid’s school district but with a lake in the backyard. Seriously, I took this dream and ran with it.
I was going full force and sure that we would win. Our future looked bright and that’s when the doubts started creeping in. I had seen so many articles about the lottery and about past winners misfortunes. I figured I should read up on the pitfalls to be prepared before the shock of winning took over.
The stories were sad and full of families falling apart or people going bankrupt. It seemed the whole world would be knocking on the winners door with horrible stories of why they needed some cash. I started thinking about the weight of the world on my shoulders and having to hear about so much despair and heartache. What about crazy people stalking my family or terrorizing the kids. Honestly, the whole idea started to freak me out. There was so much news coverage regarding this particular lottery because of its historical nature. Surely, every person would be curious who won. How would you keep your anonymity? Even if you got an attorney and put together a blind trust, there would still be people who would know. The knowledge of knowing the winner might be too much for friends and family. Who knew if they would tell their closest confidant.
So in the end, I panicked. I felt ill and wished for us not to win. Now I know why I never play the lottery. I don’t have the fortitude to deal with the consequences. disappointing, maybe, but in the end I learned that family and the happiness I have with what I’ve got feels better than the unknown and possibly scary position I would find myself in as a lottery winner.
To contact Wendy McCance about a writing assignment, interview or speaking engagement, please email her at: [email protected]
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