(6 minute read)
Welcome to Day 11 of the Twelve Days of Giving! Today’s topic is one close to heart and one that kind of came by surprise this morning. This exact phrase popped into my head: “money isn’t everything, but it sure helps.” Helps, as in gives options and speeds up the process.
Health is one of those things that you can’t really put a price tag on (and who wants to?). This post isn’t about the cost of healthcare, it’s about having the capital (money) to ensure you have choices to make no matter the topic, not just around your health. This notion of excess and available capital came to me this morning post physical therapy appointment.
Back story and costs: I’ve had foot surgery twice now as hereditary gift. I had one foot operated on in January of 2015 and just had the other done one month ago. My feet throbbed so bad they prevented me from running, cycling, skiing, dancing, and woke me up in the middle of the night. The surgery (a bunionectomy) was definitely out of improving my quality of life. Total rough cost of both surgeries $5500.
The wait time to have this procedure done is years long (3 years plus), and having both feet done at once was not an option. Had I not been able to absorb and afford the cost, I’d not be able to do the things I love nor rest a full night’s sleep for an extended period of time and perpetually be depressed. The trade off in time and cost wins when you’re trading quality of life.
Second part to the story: I was walking through Nordstrom on the way back to my vehicle from my physical therapy appointment and decided I would see if I could fit my foot into normal shoes (vs rocking my surgery sandal on repeat). Low and behold, a huge score! In the grand scheme of things yes, I could suck up rocking my surgery sandal though decided to make the shoe investments based on the fact that I’ll be in flat shoes for the next 2 months at minimum and wearing cute shoes would lift my spirits and put a bit more pep in my step (pardon the pun). Having the excess capital to do so, I was grateful.
Point: money isn’t everything, but it sure speeds up the process. What are you willing to trade off for what you want more? I wanted my life of physical activity back! The extraordinary expenditures (shoes) were some birthday icing on the cake (it’s my birthday this month) and I’m an advocate of indulgence when earned.
Try to weigh money, time and quality of life across things in your world and see where this applies. Maybe it’s laser surgery for your eyes or something dental, maybe it’s proactive planning as you know your family’s health history and it isn’t 100% clean. Better to be prepared than not, think in advance and weigh the costs.
My ultimate motivation to earning a killer income was always my mother. She had both of her feet operated on (same as I), had a kidney transplant and was on dialysis for several hours/week. She also worked full time and wouldn’t take no for an answer. There’s no way she should have been working as much as she did and it was my goal to be able to support her so she didn’t have to work at all or full time. Unfortunately time cut that option short, though being able to support oneself and those people we love is everything, especially around health, comfort and quality of life.
Tips on how to make choices around earning to spend:
- Weigh time against money & quality of life. If spending the money is going to dramatically (or dramatically enough) improve your quality of life or someone you love’s, spend the money and trade the time value.
- Divide the cost by your hourly rate and calculate the time in dollars against the cost of your investment. You make the call if your time is worth what’s on the other side.
Making decisions around health should never have to be based on money, though as we all know – the bulk of them are (and are costly).
The moral in all of this: don’t be afraid to make money or spend it, especially regarding the investment and value of your health. It helps.