I have a small, pink wooden box in my room. My great-grandmother gave it to me when I was eleven, and, at the time, it was filled with butterscotch candies. I immediately ate one and then decided to save the rest for “some other time.” That other time came a couple years later after the candy was too old to safely eat. It was no surprise to me that I had wasted a whole box of sweets whilst attempting to stockpile it. The same scenario had occurred dozens of times throughout my childhood. Boy gets candy, boy saves candy, candy gets old, boy loses candy. It’s really quite a tragic and ironic cycle.
After I hit adolescence, candy had started to lose its luster and I began to stash something more mature: cash. My pink candy box transformed into a makeshift safe where I stowed away my allowance like an old man that does not trust the new-fangled banking system. Once I got my first job (if working at an eternally near-empty grocery store constitutes a job), the money began to really flow in, at a blinding rate of about sixty dollars a week, I might add. At some point, on a whim it seems, I decided to be extravagant and bought a new stereo for my truck. It was stolen that summer.
It was only after I had experienced the emptiness and fruitlessness of hoarding that I learned to believe in the power of spending. Though originally only a creed I adopted toward my monetary assets, as I matured I began to apply my belief to other, less tangible facets of my life. I wondered, “Is it not better to spend my time with others than to selfishly keep to myself?” And surely one is better served by dispensing trust and kindness than by withholding it. Forgiveness gains no interest, so why not expend it rather than harboring resentment? Love is a renewable resource, so withdraw from its vast surplus, and I can guarantee it will be much more rewarding than storing away hate. And always, always eat the candy rather than hoarding it.
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