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Panning for Gold

My Dad has always had a fondness for westerns. Often these they would include the scene of a gnarly prospector bent double in a shallow river panning for gold. Swirling the dust and sediment around and around a plate and discarding the detritus. Hoping for the weight of a gold nugget to be the remaining prize for his toil.

After being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, I had a moment of mental gold panning that has stayed with me ever since.

My life (much like the prospectors’ pan) was full. Work, life admin, house maintenance, social events, bills, plans for holidays, wishes for material things. Day to day life clutter that I hardly even saw.

During the first few days after I was diagnosed, I was in shock. I remember standing in front of the fridge. The fridge is a sort of beacon that I’m to drawn whenever I’m avoiding anything challenging. As I stood looking for answers in amongst the salad and out of date condiments, I experienced a moment of clarity.

It was as if the swirling pan had come to rest with 2 gold nuggets on it.

Two pieces of treasure that ultimately were important to me. In fact, the only two things that matter in the end.

1. Time

2. The people I love

That was it.

A smart house ..................... not important

Fancy clothes .......................not important

Killing myself for work .........not important

How many obituaries mention soft furnishings?

It is the memories of time spent with those we love that we treasure most. Making those memories surely is something to prioritise.

I decided right then to focus on experiences rather than the acquisition of stuff.

What are the gold nuggets that really matter to you? Are they the things you prioritise?


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