Spending Time

April 25, 2019

Spend: to use or give out of the whole. Exhaust. 


It’s interesting that we use the word spend in reference to time. I’ve sat here for about fifteen minutes trying to come up with a better word, but I haven’t been able to find one. Can we truly spend something we don’t know how much we have? Wouldn't it be better to say that we Barter time, or Donate time, or perhaps we Fritter time away?


That all depends on how much time we have. Which is the one thing that none of us will ever know. 


Yesterday afternoon I spent a couple of hours filing. 


You read that correctly. I filed. I was substitute teaching, and since I didn’t have class the last hour of the day, they asked if I could stay put some papers away. So from 1:30 to 3:15, I crouched over a filing cabinet and tucked late slips in the folders of students. 


Full disclosure- I usually like doing that kind of thing. My mind is more or less constantly racing, so monotonous activities that have a clearly defined beginning, middle, and end tend to bring me joy. 


But I am currently waiting on results of a biopsy. I couldn’t help but question if this was the best use of my time. 


I once wrote that the reason God doesn’t tell us when we are going to die is because if we knew that information nothing would ever get done. Think about it- if you know you have two years left to live, you’re probably not going to show up to your shift at Staples. And Staples needs workers. And that filing needed to get done. And I needed the money. It was a win/win situation. 


So maybe spend is the right word after all. As long as we are honest about the fact that once it's gone, it ain't coming back. And that while we can see what’s on top, we can't see the bottom. A bottom that comes for all us. 

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