It’s all about options.
We make choices now so that we can have more and more choices later. While we think we may know what we want tomorrow, experience and wisdom (limited as those may be in one’s late 20s) tell me that we probably have no idea what’s in store for us and that we will be best served by keeping our options open. For example, we could go live internationally now and forego this “retirement savings frenzy” we’re currently experiencing. Or, we could buy a house and get a dog and enjoy living here a bit more than we do now as we suffer through some of the trials of apartment living. Or, we could accept the fact that early retirement (in our 30s/40s) is very unlikely (in the traditional sense that we could STOP working altogether) and just let up and enjoy our lives more by spending more money on wants and caring less about needs like retirement since we clearly have a lot more time to save for them.
However, it’s all about options. We choose to save now so that we have the option of working when we’re 70. We choose to save now so that we have the option of raising kids later. We choose to save now so that we have the option of buying a house or moving or renting forever if we find the perfect apartment community someday a la millionaire mommy next door. WHERE IS THAT APARTMENT????
Sometimes we get down and “I wish” enters our vocabulary…but we remind each other (yes, it helps to have a supportive partner) that living frugally now ensures us options later. We may want them. We may need them. Nevertheless, we will have them!