Have you ever gone over budget? You walk up to the cashier, cart brimming, and hand over your debit card only to hear that nasty little buzzer announcing it to you, the rest of the store, and the pigeons outside snatching up crumbs in the parking lot?
A kind cashier will play it off as a mechanical error. “Oh, these card readers have been acting up lately,” she say with an encouraging smile. “Do you want to try that again?”
Of course you don’t. You know it’s not the card. “Oh no, that’s okay” you say, returning her smile. Two can play this game. “I’ll just try another card.” This way, it just looks like you are in a hurry. You hope. Out pops the credit card you promised your husband you aren’t using anymore.
The credit card is a fantastic invention. It’s the magic trick we all carry in our pockets, and it requires absolutely no skill to use it. Even my six-year-old has it down. “Just charge it, Mom!” she says with gusto whenever I tell her we can’t afford whatever shiny lure catches her eye in the store.
And like a hat with a false bottom, or a card attached to barely visible fishing line, it really is a trick, nothing more than an illusion; a credit card does not make more money. It merely siphons it from a future budget.
The same thing is true of time.
Like the money earmarked for Costco, time is finite. Once you’ve spent it, it’s gone. The time you’ve spent reading these reflections is time you will never get back (sorry).
You could have chosen to walk the dog, wash the dishes, or inspect the intricate handiwork on your daughter’s playdough cookie. Instead, you’re here with me. Reading. Your “yes” to these words is a “no” to everything else you could be doing in this very moment.
In this new year, my time budgets have been redrawn, and this notice is me clipping my credit cards. Will I be back? Definitely. Probably. My “no” here is a “yes” to something new, something exciting, and it’s definitely something I’ll want to share with you.
When it’s time.
A Note for Paid Subscribers
Thank you for your support, which has made it possible to balance homeschooling, homemaking and caring for four small kiddos with maintaining this creative project. If you’d like to “pause” your subscription during this time, you can edit those settings in your account.
If you’d like to continue your financial support for this new project while I work behind the scenes, you don’t need to change a thing!
Podcast notifications will continue to be unpaywalled (which will finish out Season 2 before going on hiatus). I will be sending exclusive updates to paid subscribers that I won’t share anywhere else, so if you do want the inside scoop, stay tuned.
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Good luck with the "reset" time!