Can’t Buy Me Love

Another blog so soon! And no one is as shocked as I.
I’ve been thinking about the questions I posed in my last blog:

What are you willing to sacrifice?
What are you willing to prioritize?
What areas of your life are you comfortable seeing suffer as you try to have it all?

Upon further reflection, I really think my assessment that the answers weren’t coming “as easily as I’d like”, wasn’t genuine. I think the more honest response is that they come to me quite easily—and quite differently than they used to.

In high school I worked my butt off—I was a more motivated worker than I was in college, even. I worked usually two jobs, averaging about 50 hours a week and aced all my college courses (which I started junior year), and somehow managed to find time to stay out late with all my friends at the beach or at Starbucks. My biggest focus in life was graduating early, with really wonderful grades that would guarantee me a good job.

I juggled a work schedule that no one expected me to, with a work ethic that I’m proud of to this day, because I learned it from my parents. I don’t regret my decision to do so because really I could have been doing worse than working with the elderly, but now that I look, really look, I wonder why I was doing it. I didn’t have grand plans for the money. It was just sort of the thing you did as a young person.

I certainly didn’t save my money. I know I made a modest amount considering my age, and I know that I literally have no idea where it went. I’ve never been good at budgeting. At 22, I’m finally learning to.

This will, in all likelihood, forever solidify the image I assume I’ve gathered over the past year or so as a world-traveling, missionary, granola head, sort-of-hippie (sorry, not sorry), but I don’t care about money.

I’m just finally recognizing it for what it was and adjusting my life accordingly.

Life in general requires working and some sort of income to make it. I have to work and I’m not opposed to it. But I’m done finding my value in how much I make, where I work and honestly, what my relationship status is (more on that at a later time). I’m finished uttering those petty little words of “I need the money”, as I put myself in a working environment that sucks the life out of me. Who doesn’t need the money? To live in America is to set stacks of money that we’ll get paid next week on fire. How is that even a good reasoning for living?

I’m finished forfeiting time with my family to chase the money. I’ve been without them long enough, and I don’t know how much more time I have with them.

I could be making more money if I got a second job. I have the time. I’m young. And “I need the money”. I finally have a goal: my next trip overseas! And I’ve got bills–nay, DEBT, even. And I am saving my money for these things.

But money and making it is never going to be the reason I get up in the morning.
I choose to do LESS than I could, because my family, my sanity, and learning to enjoy life is more important to me.

And so, I’d say, I’m willing to sacrifice the money. 

Whoever loves money never has money enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless.
   – Ecclesiastes 5:10

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