Tuesday, September 6, 2011
On Feeling Rich
I woke up this morning, feeling like a princess. I had a sheet underneath me, a sheet over me, a blanket on top of that, and then, riches of all riches, a fluffy bedspread to snuggle into. Ever since purchasing a new bed in early July and moving our old bed into the empty bedroom for Doah and guests, we have had only a blanket on top.
I have hankered after a bedspread not because it is the commonly accepted way to finish a bed -- everyone knows I am eccentric, anyway, so having a blanket was sufficient in many respects: warmth, covering, etc. No, I just wanted a bedspread the way children want a ball or candy or something special. For me, the bedspread was special.
Certainly, with my income I can afford a bedspread. But there is an odd thing about my income: it disappears rather quickly. (I suppose I am not unique in that way.) First, there is Shane who needs $300 a month for special milk for Nikolina who is missing most of her intestines. Then there is Lizzie and her cat, who seems to need surgery periodically. Then Doah and Noelle, who needed scads of money to pay for medical expenses as children but need little these days, are always happy to have a small gift. And that's family. After that, there is Sula, the parish cat, who needs surgery -- I promised God's credit card in support of that cost. And the mission and the retreat center and other charities. And, the most fun of all, nearly every day someone who happens into my life who needs the money more than I do. After all, I need little and, surprisingly, I find myself post-conversion wanting little. I enjoy sprinkling my income around in this way, but somehow it did not leave any extra for a bedspread the past two months.
Until I got my recent travel reimbursement and per diem and found that I had spent considerably less on eating than my office thought I should have. Yippee! Bedspread money!
There is something special about waiting. There is something special about wanting. Instant gratification does not compare with the richness of want deferred or potential want gratification given away to someone else.
Yes, I feel rich with my new bedspread. However, I feel even richer each time I am able to take money from my pocket and give it to someone who needs it more.
(Also posted on 100th Lamb.)