What I want and what I need are very different things. I wanted a house with character and found one, not realizing it wasn’t what I needed. I pursued the house I wanted with all my heart, so when the sale fell through I was devastated but forced to look again from a different perspective. The day I moved in, I looked out of the broken kitchen window at five foot tall weeds on the back bank and then down at the damaged linoleum countertops and cried; still not realizing this house was what I needed. The yard and house, now very much changed, in the perfect location, has what I need, even though it will never have everything I want. Making the distinction between wanting and needing requires thought, but our consumption based economy runs on making people think they need what they want. In my mind, the thought, I want, is more powerful than I need, so I make a list of wants, crossing out what I don’t need, and then adding back some wants if there’s room in my budget. It’s OK not to have everything I want; after all many people don’t have everything they need.