Money vs. Time

 And you run and you run to catch up with the sun but it’s sinking,
Racing around to come up behind you again.
The sun is the same in a relative way, but your older
Shorter of breath and one day closer to death – Pink Floyd

It’s been seventy-eight days I have had six days off. That averages out to one day every twelve and a half. Due to scheduling there has been a couple stretches of eighteen and nineteen days. That gets to you quickly.

When this first started in mid-March the Turnaround, as it is called, brought excitement of making extra money giving me the attitude of “bring it on.” Now, starting the twelfth week I’m wondering if it will ever end.

My desire and hope to take advantage of the extra money is going as planned. However, the “bring it on” feistiness is morphing into “when will this turnaround stop revolving so I can get off.”  My funds may have increased, but my social life is bankrupt. 

I consider myself a social person. I like people. I enjoy the company of others. The one person I love spending time with the most is exasperated every day when she finds out I’m not done yet.  She feels for me every morning as I leave for another twelve-hour day of absence from her life. I tell her the only solace to this no end in sight personal groundhog day, is the increasing funds in our… “I don’t care about that, I would rather have you,” she emphasizes. 

It reminded me of something John D. Rockefeller said once when asked, “How much money is enough?” He answered “Just a little bit more.” My wife could care less about the money that is going into our account. She wants just a little bit more time with me.

She wants something money can’t buy, time. I started to take inventory of all I have been missing in my social landscape. Meetings with my writing friends, time with church members; but most importantly, time with the one who longs to spend time with me. She knows and I know I can’t change my work schedule. The dilemma is we’re both tired of seeing a pinhole of light at the end of this tunnel. 

Time is precious, but it can’t be guaranteed. Scripture says in James 4:14,  yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. (ESV) I can add to my account, but I can’t buy back the time I have lost with my wife. Our three-day weekends are obliterated. The couple of hours we have each evening is shortened by responsibilities and exhaustion.

This three-month journey is slowly coming to an end. Watching the plant turning back to normal makes me see a brighter light shining in the tunnel. The hope when walking in to start my day is that my hours will be shortened for work but increased in my social life. Extra money is always a benefit, extra time with the one you love… can’t put a price on that. 

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