I was speaking to one of my favorite colleagues about life and his family. Let’s call him Abdul. Abdul is well into his fifties with a wife and a family of four. In one of our recent conversations, he shared something so beautiful and so inspiring that I know it is going to stay with me for life.
He told me that every night, he makes sure to have dinner with his father. (I didn’t ask how old he is but I’m certain he’s a mature gentleman). And get this—on Saturdays, he finds time to get up early, grab two cups of coffee from Starbucks, and do one lap around Prospect Park.
Laughing. Sharing. Talking.
Basically, making much of his father’s time on earth and creating memories.
My wise friend told me, “I’m soaking up the sun before the impending storm.” Such a gorgeous and gentle metaphor for the inevitable grief and loss he will feel when his father transitions.
I went back to my desk with this on my mind and had me thinking about what dinners with dad, Starbucks, and laps around Prospect Park was really really about: Making time for what matters to you most.
Abdul’s time with his dad doesn’t cost him much which is great. And there are things that are on my MIT (Most Important Thing) list that costs me little.
There are some of the things that I want to do with my life that will cost a pretty penny.
And I’m okay with that. And if you have some things on your MIT list, you should be okay with that, too.
What Your MIT?
It’s been about two weeks since I’ve been back from visiting London by myself, a lifelong dream of mine, but it took consistently saving for months to make it happen and a big fat nudge from my husband to push me to set a date when I was chickening out on going. (A post about London is in the works. I’m still catching up on emails and deadlines. But stay tuned).
I was able to enjoy myself (so much) not just because of the people that I met and the places that I saw, but also (on a deeper level) because I knew that everything was paid-in-full. When I came home, I knew that I wouldn’t spoil my high by seeing a bill. While I was there, I was able to carry enough money to spend as I wished, though, I noticed that being in London and walking the street that my mom walked close to forty years ago, and experiencing my “Black British” experience was priceless.
Another one of my dreams is to be a published author. I’m toying with the self-publishing route and ya’ll… indie publishing is NO JOKE on your budget. The upfront costs for copyediting, cover design, and publicity (if you want to hire a publicist) are real, but when I’m an Amazon Bestseller and a New York Times Bestseller (I’m speaking it and claiming it), I’ll recoup the initial investment and then some. But in the meantime, in between time, I’m steadily growing The Frugal Feminista to help me fund this dream of mine. So, I’m careful with my coins and planning for that.
And it may sound crazy, (don’t judge me) but another one of my goals in life is to be a vegan—at least most of the time and I’m thinking about investing in a food coach that can help me process my relationship with food and provide me with guidance on how to be resilient when I make food choices that don’t align with my nutritional goals. (Btw—coaches have coaches, in case you were wondering. I’m good with money, but need support with nutrition and I’m not afraid to show it.) And I know and you know, coaches ain’t cheap, but I think it will be worth it in the long run.
Frugal Feministas–So what about you? Have you slowed the world down long enough to help you think about you MIT and how you are planning to make these dreams into concrete goals and savings targets? Share your vision by joining the growing community of women inspired in the comments below, or on Twitter using the hashtag #womeninspired.