It was my sister that pointed it out to me... how, when she asks me how we are, I would always say "We're good." but when she asks a cousin of ours (actually, an in-law because she married our cousin), she'd say, "Poor, but surviving."
Always, there is a reference to how they have to tighten their belts. Understandably, they are both government employees in non-high paying positions. And my cousin-in-law's pregnancy and delivery last year was rife with more difficulties than I had. She was in bed rest for a longer time, and was confined more times too. She also had numerous complications, labored for a long time and underwent C-section too (while mine was a scheduled one without labor). She often tells me that they're just surviving on loans, whether from Pag-Ibig or GSIS. She and my cousin take turns on who's taking out the loan, and for key expenses, like birthdays and enrollment time (because they have a school-age son too). The biggest loan they took was for their home... our biggest loan is for Maxime, our car. No contest really, in terms of where we are already in life's journey. Baby Jojo and I are only starting... they've had around a decade of family life already.
I actually expect to also find ourselves in a similar scenario someday... foregoing frivolous lifestyles and reduced to an inflatable pool in our backyard for the summer. Because there will be more bills to pay, more mouths to feed, higher taxes and cost of living. And am sure it wouldn't really be a sad, bad thing. Not necessarily, at least.
The important thing is, that we know the resources we can tap when we're in a fix. Like maybe even a bad credit cash loan when the going got really tough. So long as we remain tough too, and keep on going.