Time Worth Spending

uncle bruce memorialIt’s been a long night/day. I took a red-eye on Saturday at midnight in order to attend the funeral of my dear Uncle Bruce on Saturday morning. After the funeral, I spent several fulfilling hours with family and friends that I haven’t seen for years. Due to my lack of sleep, it took a few cups of coffee just to get me through the day.

I almost didn’t make the trip. The funeral was in Chicago and I live in Los Angeles. I’ve been traveling a lot lately and constantly being on the road can take its toll on the body, mind, and the pocketbook. I told myself that I needed to stay home on the weekend for a change. I told myself that Uncle Bruce would understand. I told myself that his family wouldn’t hold it against me. I told myself that lots of other people would miss the funeral too. I told myself lots of things, but none of them put my heart at ease.

At a level that went beyond guilt, I knew I had to show up, tell the family I love them, and participate in the celebration of his life. To my surprise, I was given the chance to speak for a few minutes. I made it a point to tell everyone what Uncle Bruce stood for, how it impacted my life, and what we can all learn from his example. Had I missed this opportunity, I think I would have regretted it for years to come. Ten years from now it won’t matter how tired I was today. The opportunity to share what he meant to me, however, is something I will cherish for a lifetime.

It’s important to manage your money, energy, and time. None of us have an unlimited amount of resources to give. But it’s also important to recognize those rare moments when it’s best to lay everything on the line for something or someone you truly love. And that’s exactly what Uncle Bruce taught me: don’t waste your time, but don’t miss out on the opportunity to be there for the things and the people who make time worth experiencing.