I don’t want you to worry when I say this, but right now I’m not fine.
I’m occasionally really good. I never really have pain. I’m not even all that tired. But fine implies a monotonous stability of emotions I can’t really claim right now. You never know what’s going to break me. The other night, it was Suze Orman.
Now, I am thinking that surely I missed some aspect of the situation, but this is what I heard. The call-in guest had $44,000 in savings, people. And that did not even include her less-liquid investments. But Suze told her she could not spend $5000 to go to the Grand Canyon for her 50th birthday because that would only leave her seven months (AND THREE WEEKS) of her living expenses instead of eight and what if she got hurt at the Grand Canyon and could not work for eight months? I lost it. I rarely feel that passionate about strangers telling each other what to do. I wanted to crawl through my television and shake her. I wanted to show her my scars. I prayed the woman would not listen to this idiocy. Because every feeling revolts.
What if she gets hurt at the Grand Canyon?! What if she dies tomorrow never having seen one of the WONDERS of the WORLD? Are you kidding me? Go to the Grand Canyon, woman. For the love of all that is holy. Live while you’re alive. When you get back, you should probably pay off that 30K in debt I saw in your stats, but that shouldn’t be a problem since YOU HAVE 30K. Then you can start saving again, all with the comfortable knowledge that you saw the Grand Canyon for goodness sake and you’re fifty and rockin’ it.
I have an actual theory about this beyond the misappropriated passion. You know the money mantra to save/invest a little, give a little, and spend a little every time you get? I love that concept. And I think you have to decide for yourself exactly where the percentages lie and when to bend them. And I think the principle should be applied to life.
What if every minute we’re alive was as well thought-out as the pennies we earn? To go to work and earn the means for shelter, insurance, and school clothes for the children is to invest. To make a meal for someone or volunteer your time or listen to a friend without taking anything from them in return, is to give. To watch Gossip Girl on Netflix – that is to spend. We need all the parts, I think. Personally I believe a trip away gives you so much perspective and energy and renewed kindness for the world, that it can count for spending and investing. And if that woman did not go to the Grand Canyon for her fiftieth, I really don’t think I can go on.
Live big, people. Don’t save everything for a day that may not come. And for goodness sake, spend a little.