A longing for more money has grabbed hold of me at last. I grew up a shade or so above poor. Watching my parents taught me that money wasn’t security; there might always be more of it, but there was no such thing as “enough.” Money was such a mystery to me. It seemed like the people I thought should have money– smart people, kind people– didn’t, in spite of how hard they worked or how much they saved. The distribution of wealth seemed (seems) to me to be more of a random act of God than the consequence of a good work ethic. It was like having blue eyes or an older brother (two other things I lacked). Consequently, I wrote money off with a shrug. I’ve gone without a great many things as a result — dental care, a working vehicle, etc. — but for the most part I’ve been very lucky. I ignored money and it ignored me. But, alas, no more.
While working on a few different projects this week, I caught myself building castles in the air– and such castles! They make Buckingham Palace look like an outhouse. Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m very grateful for my comfortable life. I have a roof over my head plus a spare, a nice car, plenty to eat, and many little luxuries. I don’t need any more than I have now. But if I did have more, oh, the things I could do!
Jacob, in The Book of Mormon, says that if we seek first to follow Christ, and then seek to be wealthy, and if we seek wealth with the intent to do good, we will be blessed. While it might begin that way for me, I feel that I would be like Gandalf and The One Ring; I would want it in order to do good, but through me, it would do great evil. So I am grateful that I don’t have to face that temptation.
If I had a million dollars all at once, here is what I would do with this. Feel free to remind me of this list if it becomes relevant:
1. Pay off mortgages and student loans
2. Buy my parents’ home in Jacksonville and buy them another one Jonesboro, where they actually live
3. Set up a college fund and a mission fund for my son
4. Set up college funds for my younger brother and sister
5. Buy my husband a plane
6. Set up one scholarship at BYU for “mediocre” students who are working their way through college because they either don’t qualify for financial aid or can’t figure out how to apply for it
7. Set up a fund to sponsor LDS students at ACU (bwahaha!)
8. My in-laws have no needs of which I’m aware, but if they did, I’d do that
9. Tack on another wing at the Hospital at UPenn, depending on how David’s health goes.
If there was any left, I would:
1. Do whatever necessary to keep Sarah McLaughlin from doing anymore of those horrible commercials that make me cry
2. Buy a B&B along the PCH.
3. Go on a hot air balloon ride.
4. Go on a luxurious vacation and order room service and eat from the minibar whenever I like
5. Create the greatest comic book shop ever, to be run by my cousin as she sees fit. Perhaps even start our own publishing house. 🙂
6. Hire a housekeeper.
7. Tour the great cheeses of the world.
That’s all I can think of for now. Do you have any suggestions? What would you do?