Upon hearing that some people just won a huge lottery, totaling (after taxes) 218 million dollars per person, our dinner discussion turned to what I would a game of “If I Won the Lottery.” What would you do with all that money?
Here’s what wasn’t mentioned:
- No one planned to buy a yacht.
- A thought about owning a private jet was scoffed at.
- No one planned to have cosmetic surgery.
- No one bought big screen televisions.
- Not one person mentioned taking a world cruise.
- No decks, greenhouses, hot tubs or out-door kitchens were mentioned.
- Jewelery, watches, investment in gold and silver never made it to the conversation.
So here’s what did make it into the conversation of middle-aged folks, both male and female:
- Buy a small house near to a dear sister, who would like to have her family closer. But not a big house, something that would be small enough for two to live in without adding to the carbon footprint.
- Buy a condo in the city where most of us go for medical treatment–to share with folks when they needed someplace to stay while receiving medical care.
- Buy a new Prius.
- Make sure the children and grandchildren have enough money to not worry about having money. But truthfully? Nobody could put a dollar amount on that sentiment.
- Give money to family.
- Start a foundation to help folks who are in need.
- Build a tinker’s shop without worrying about the expense to the family budget.
- Give money to some friends who are in need.
- Be able to donate to worthy causes.
Each of us has our own medical issues. We all have to budget, but we get by. We all have grown children with grandchildren. So what did we focus on? RELATIONSHIPS.
Spontaneous comments were almost all about our relationship with people, but interwoven was relationship with mother earth. I was struck by how forthcoming everyone was with instant answers–all but one having to do with family, friends and those in need. (Our tinker really wants his tinker’s shop. He has worked hard all his life–it seems a small enough reward for someone with 218 million to spend.)
It may have started as a “Game,” but it certainly became a focal point of what is valued by each of us. Of where we would like to place our hearts and our bank accounts. I certainly have thought about this for several lingering days. That perhaps if we challenged ourselves to “the GAME,” that it would help to simplify what we truly want in life. What goals we will pursue. What perhaps we will define as “success” in our later years.
What would you do with 218 Million dollars?
Be gentle with yourself and your children.
PS: Quakers don’t gamble, so winning the lottery will not be a source of complication for me.