what money cannot buy

I sent my sisters and their families to the airport yesterday.  They were off to the US for an 11-day holiday.  It’s not long and I’m happy for them but upon coming home, I just felt a twinge of “missing”.

Money cannot buy you family whom you will actually miss when they are away! 🙂

It’s a reminder to make the most of the time we have with all precious to us.  Many things and events happening lately, remind me how precious time is.  Don’t wait till the next holiday to spend time with the family, working yourself to the bone to get that holiday;  Remaining too tired every day to have that conversation, that dinner, that breakfast.

Money cannot buy us lost time.

When you know of someone fighting to live, it is painful to see people in the pink of health who give up or who are spurious about their remarks and their lives.

Money cannot buy health and another chance at life.

The Fukushima 50 comes close to reminding me about the sacrificial love of God. It is courage and heroism at its highest.  These faceless heros work at pain of death for mere strangers who might not even appreciate their sacrifice.

Money cannot buy such nobility of spirit.

What of the Japanese survivors, tenacious in their resolve to help their fellow citizens…like the doctors and nurses who remain in the ravaged areas to attend to the mostly aged and hurt victims.  Or the survivors who remain disciplined, queuing for food.  Not wiping off supermarket shelves.  Buying enough for themselves and leaving something for others as well.  Where there’s no looting and other crimes in the face of carnage.

Money cannot buy quiet dignity.

Selfishness is more the norm these days in a world where people “pussy foot” around their children’s whims and fancies and schedules.  Where apparently, discipline and love are a dichotomy and not complementary (that’s a topic for another day).  To me, that’s the start of a self-centred society.

Money cannot buy grace and graciousness.

Add to that the paranoia of wealth.  I know of people who are so wealthy but live in fear that at any time, they will lose it all.  Suspecting even family members of siphoning off their wealth.

Money can make more money but cannot buy peace of mind.

Which is why they surround themselves with leftenants who tend to be of a certain nature.  Resolved in their commitment to change with the flavours of the day. I mean bamboo plants are resilient.  They can withstand stresses as they bend and sway according to the direction of the wind.  But certainly someone who sways with the wind, does not to the adage add.

Money cannot buy wisdom to make you a man of character.  On the contrary, money makes a person shameless. 😮

I know of people who botox their way to a younger face.  Unfortunately, botox does not make for a kinder heart.

Proverbs says, “The heart of the wise teaches his mouth and adds learning to his lips”.  I read this in a devotional: “During a time of economic crisis and depressing news, two students at Purdue University decided to lift the spirits of people on campus with some encouraging words. For two hours every Wednesday afternoon, Cameron Brown and Brett Westcott stood along a busy walkway holding a large “Free Compliments” sign and saying nice things to everyone who passed by. “I like your red coat.” “Cool snow boots.” “Very nice smile.” Some students said they deliberately walked past “the compliment guys” every Wednesday just to hear a kind word.”  How starved we are, of kindness.

Money cannot buy kind words, kind gestures, kind deeds.  These are priceless from wise hearts.

These kind thoughts and words and deeds are the stuff that have made my birthday quite an occasion…. still :p

The past Sunday saw the last of my birthday celebrations for the year, at Oriole. Over and above everything, I enjoyed the perfect latte with a good friend.

Another friend remarked that it’s a good thing, a birthday is not more than once a year, what with my month-long celebrations. 🙂 She meant it for my waistline :p but it might seem a little awkward such a protracted celebration at my wizened (hopefully :p ) ripe, old age. 🙂 But I decided that it’s a privilege and a blessing to still have at this point in my life, people who remember. I am honoured.

I started this blog to quip about my birthday and to thank everyone.  But ended up with this.  Pardon the lengthy ruminations but ultimately it is also to me, what money cannot buy.

Money cannot buy you the unconditional love of family and friendships where we take turns for it to be about the other person. Appreciate the good turn! 🙂

We are bombarded constantly by all manner of media touting things money can buy. But every purchase does not make us happier.

For instance, money cannot buy us a sense of humour for laughter, touted as the best medicine.  Money cannot buy things that matter.


2 thoughts on “what money cannot buy”

  1. Wow! 2Cents. Not bad at all!! What a comfort to know that whatever the doctor prescribes, he has already tried and tested. 😉

    It’s like the King’s taster, tasting the food to ascertain that it’s safe for the King to eat it. For all intents and purposes, we should now address you as “Your Majesty” rather than 2Cents! haha….

    Or like “brave stupidity” or “stupid bravery”, it’s perhaps different sides to the same coin… 2Cennn…… I mean Your Majesty. :p

    Whatever it is, keep this doctor. Nowhere else do they come with tried and tested prescriptions. 🙂

    Jokes aside, trust your medical condition will normalise soon. Keep healthy… Jia you!

  2. Money cannot buy health rings a bell with me. I visited a local hospital recently and was given a tour of the facility. I walked away with a statement made by a learned gentleman who I consider a great leader – We treat our cars better than our bodies. We send our cars for regular maintenance but do not do the same for our own bodies. With our bodies, we only seek treatment when something goes wrong. It is akin to driving the car without maintenance till it breaks down.
    It was probably this nagging thought that got me to do my first health screening after procrastinating all my life…..that must be a Guiness World Record…..OK, I exaggerate…it probably makes the Singapore Book of Records 😛 I received the results a few days ago. The good news is I am in good company – my doctor and I are in the same boat….hahahaha…he rattled on for 2 whole minutes about the food I had to avoid or eat in moderation. I then asked him what I could eat “unmoderated”….he was silent for a few seconds and I told him, “I know 3 items – warm water, cold water and luke warm water.” 😛
    On a more serious note, I am glad I did the health screening so I can better control the situation…but I wonder why I waited so long….is it procrastination or fear of the unknown. There is a fine line between bravery and stupidity….maybe it is brave stupidity…or is it stupid bravery …… hahahaha

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