$540 Million: My personal low

I just bought a Mega Millions Lotto ticket. At 33 (nearly 34) years of age, this is my first lottery ticket purchase ever. Seriously, I looked up online how to buy the damn things because I didn’t want to embarass myself. I guess in front of the deli counter guy?  Don’t worry, I totally handled it like a pro.

“I want the Mega Millions.” I believe is how it went down.

In case you didn’t hear, it’s at a world record breaking high of $540 million.

Let me reword that: Over half a billion dollars. After taxes it’s gonna be about $253 million to a jackpot winner.  So I took $5 and bought myself a ticket.  That number is so high it feels almost irresponsible not to. (That’s probably what every gambler tells themselves.) Then I realized the irony: the whole reason I bought the damn thing is because I’m way down on my luck these days.

But as down in the dumps as I am about my financial, personal, and what-the-hell-am-I-gonna-be situation, this brief moment of lotto winning hope actually got me day dreaming in a way I haven’t in awhile.

I ignore things.  That’s how I get through my days usually.  I accept life for what it is and then I ignore it.  If I give my troubles any amount of acknowledgement, I begin to shut down.  Trust me, writing this post has already put me back in bed… twice.  So I’m laying there fretting about all the stupid things when I start to stare at this dumb lotto ticket.

What if I won? What would I do?  How would I change my life?  Normally I hate this line of thought because, give me a break, it ain’t gonna happen and I wind up in the aforementioned funk.  But this time I actually enjoyed it.

A quiet sense of pleasure washed over me as I thought about paying off medical expenses for loved ones. Buying myself a brand new pair of jeans that cost more than $20. Opening up a gallery downtown and featuring only and all those amazing artists I’ve seen and met over the internet.  Or maybe a bar. Or maybe both. A new camera. Traveling to amazing places to take photos. Driving across country.  Helping people who need help.  Buying concert tickets to big shows and giving them away for free.  Attending sporting events and sitting in really great seats just once. Taking myself out to a really nice meal. Having one major stress lift off my shoulders so I can really start to focus on everything else.

That’s how I got the energy to get up and finish this post.  I know I won’t win the silly lottery, but because of it I was reminded that there are endless possibilities in life.  I don’t need a jackpot to achieve my dreams (though it sure would effin’ help!!).  I can actually get there on my own hard work.  Nothing is impossible, just really difficult sometimes.

That’s so comforting.  But now if you’ll excuse me, I really need to get back to my version of ignoring so that I can move forward. I’ve got work to do!

So how many of you bought a ticket today?

Update: It took me so long to get this out that the jackpot climbed to $640 million.  



One Comment

  1. Reply
    Alli April 2, 2012

    Great post. 2011 was a tough year for us (medical bills & otherwise) so I can relate to your post and appreciate you sharing. And yes, we daydreamed about what we’d do if we won, too. It’s hard not to get your hopes up, just a little bit. : )

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