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Discovering the worth of the invaluable
Posted on Dec. 8, 2006

“They deem me mad because I will not sell my days for gold; and I deem them mad because they think my days have a price.” –Kahlil Gibran

Rushing around seems to be what I do best these days. Life is like a blur of papers, bills, clocks and approaching deadlines that all want my attention at the same time.

One night after another busy day, I came home late and tired, with an empty stomach and a list of to-dos screaming in my ear. My daughter rushed over to me and handed me a piece of paper. She had carefully written: “This is how many miles of love is in my heart, trillions and trillions.”

I get these kinds of wonderful notes from her all the time. But that piece of paper just made me think about how simple life would be if we all just took the time to think about why we are rushing around for those other little pieces of paper.

We go to school and work to get money, right? Our basic need for money is to pay for necessities so we can survive. But haven’t we crossed that line? Most of us in the United States are earning much more than the amount we need to survive, and yet we still seem to want more.

Those pieces of green paper were created by humans and are now controlling the limited time we have on this planet. If you really think about that it becomes even more confusing. You can’t buy time so what are we doing?

Christmas is my favorite time of the year. Yes, when I was younger it was because of the presents, and my mom loves to tell the story of my siblings and me posting our wish lists across the dining room wall like wallpaper one year. But now that just makes me sad to think that I saw the holidays that way.

After I had my daughter, I started to see Christmas differently. But the first Christmas I spent at home after battling Leukemia was the best by far. It wasn’t about the presents or the beautiful wrapping paper or anything else that came with a receipt. That Christmas was about being alive and breathing the same air as my loved ones. The moments I got to spend with my family and friends had more value than any inked paper ever could.

Last year on Christmas Day, my best friend lost her mom in a car accident. I guarantee that nothing in any store would hold any value next to seeing her again. I guess that’s one of life’s gifts that you take unwillingly. Usually people realize the value of time after it’s too late to go back, and it can’t be printed on dollar bills.

Of course, you don’t have to get cancer or lose a loved one to realize that life is not about money. You can see it in the eyes of the elderly who have lived their lives and just want to share their story with anyone who will listen.

You can be a part of charity and hand out clothes and food to people who are less fortunate than you. These moments are not about money because you can’t measure your reward.

I’m still trying to just enjoy each moment and not worry about the money because as an anonymous author wrote: “The real measure of your wealth is how much you’d be worth if you lost all your money.”

So this Christmas please live, love, laugh and look around you to count the things that money can’t buy.

Angie Gangi, a senior broadcasting major, is sports editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at agangi@ulv.edu.