W = Wealth

Wealth is the ability to fully experience life”  Henry David Thoreau

I had so many ideas for the letter W, but my mind kept coming back to the concept of wealth.


When I graduated from university in 1979 and moved to Toronto to begin my career, I didn’t know anyone.  I felt like an outsider who didn’t fit in and was really lonely.

One sunny fall day as I was walking aimlessly around, I passed a storefront for a fortune teller.  On impulse, I went in.  I don’t remember much beyond the dark, little room I was escorted into, but there were 3 things I was told that day I would never forget.

The first was that I would marry only once.  I would have 2 sons and, while I would never be wealthy, I would have a comfortable life.

Over the years I’ve reflected occasionally on those 3 things.  So far I would say she was correct about the first prediction – and even the second one, although over the years we’ve *adopted* several more sons – but she was dead wrong about the third.

I’ve discovered that wealth is not something that’s measured purely by the number in a bank account.  Wealth comes from the heart.

My first lesson on that subject came in 1986 when Gilles and I had bought our first home – a small rundown “fixer-upper”.  It was a horrible little place … we lived in a constant cloud of drywall and plaster dust as Gilles developed his handyman skills.

One evening as we sat on the front step of our money-pit eating watermelon with our young son, Gilles declared he felt like the richest man in the world.  I looked at him like he had suddenly developed a second head … but he really meant it.

Gilles had never lived in a house.  He grew up on the second floor of a small walk-up apartment and from there moved between various apartments. From his perspective – sitting on the front step of his first house with a wife and son – his life was grand.

A few years later we then made a very deliberate decision to collect memories and experiences rather than ‘stuff’. We invested heavily in travel, ‘doing things’, and cultivating friendships.

The result has been riches beyond my wildest dreams.  I have the deep love and support of my family, strong and loyal friendships, and the many adventures we’ve enjoyed.

The bounty of my wealth is staggering.

Even better … I know it’s just going to continue to grow.

  April A to Z Challenge 2015

Thank you for visiting me today.  Hope you’ll enjoy some Waffles … in a variety of toppings.

Belgium Waffles 2

Image from Flickr

About Joanne Sisco

Retired but not idle. Life is an adventure - I plan to continue to embrace it.
This entry was posted in A-Z Challenge - 2015, Attitude, Family, Memories and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

57 Responses to W = Wealth

  1. jannatwrites says:

    There is so much truth in this. I agree that real wealth isn’t measured in spendable currency or things we acquire. I’m seeing this more and more…


  2. Isn’t it a relief when we finally come to this realization – that the pursuit of stuff is so unsatisfying. Thanks for sharing – so many of your posts in this A-Z have been personal and uplifting.


  3. bulldog says:

    You are extremely wealthy, from what I see… there is so much wealth in friendship and mine has grown in leaps and bounds since blogging….


  4. Corina says:

    You’ve invested very well. Your wealth shows and glows!


  5. I like your interpretation of wealth!



  6. I may not be monetarily wealthy, but I am wealthy in family, friends, and love. Now, if I could just get a bit more health 🙂
    Visiting from A to Z…
    Katie @TheCyborgMom


  7. Well wealthy lady, I’ve eaten too many of your goodies and the sugar rush has stolen my brain. Maybe a little green salad tomorrow.


  8. Ingrid says:

    Lovely post and holds true for many of us. Wealth presents itself in many ways 🙂


  9. sinewavelife says:

    Beautifully said. True wealth is found in shared experiences with loved ones! I’ll be so sad when April is over and I don’t get to read your posts every day.


  10. hilarymb says:

    Hi Joanne .. a great way of looking at life – you made some wise decisions .. the wealthiest being Gilles!! Congratulations .. cheers Hilary


  11. Wonderful post. I feel the same as you about what constitutes true wealth. Especially since the only rich people I have known in my life so far have all been miserable and are definitely not to be envied!


  12. lovetotrav says:

    Loved this. Absolutely beautiful. It so resonated with me. 🙂


  13. I love that quote! I have written it down! 🙂 It’s funny, I was thinking about wealth this morning on my walk and how truly blessed I am. It only takes a little perspective to see how wealthy each of us is. Thank you for that reminder! Ooohhhhh, waffles! 🙂


  14. Heyjude says:

    So very true! And hide those waffles pleeeaaase…. oh, no, too late!


  15. Your A-Z series has been a wonderful experience, Joanne. The thought and time you’ve invested here is a treat to read and I learn something new every day. 🙂


  16. Another wonderful peek inside the life of Joanne. Yes, you are much wealthier than some as well as interesting to the ninth degree. ❤ ❤


  17. NancyTex says:

    An abundance of wealth, indeed.


  18. Yes, it’s all relative isn’t it? It’s nice to be so satisfied with what you have!


  19. Lynn says:

    Joanne, I think this is my very favourite to date, in your A-Z challenge. Wealth can be defined in a variety of ways but like your Gilles, I define mine by the richness of the people in my life. They make my life rich in every way that matters!


  20. Yes, yes and yes. Agree with you completely. I would take experiences over things any day.

    You gotta stop putting things like that in front of me at this hour of the night…. Now I want waffles right before bedtime. (Well, well after bedtime, really.) How will I sleep??


    • joannesisco says:

      Every once in a while I’ve questioned the wisdom of all the money we’ve spent travelling and doing things.
      … yet here we are many, many years later and we still talk about our trips. Those memories made and bonds created are priceless beyond measure … and I will have them until the day I die.

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Joe says:

    Very well stated Joanne 🙂 Health and happiness are way more important than financial wealth 🙂


  22. Mrs. P says:

    Outstanding post…very true to my own philosophy! My clients are people of stuff and although I can admire their stuff, it isn’t for me. I wanted…crazy mad in love and I got it. Our life is simple. I can relate to Gilles on the front steps of the porch as we embark on our own fixer upper. We have always wanted to create using our own sweat equity…and here it is.


    • joannesisco says:

      I admire other people’s stuff too … it would always be nice to have ‘more’ 🙂
      … but I’ve never believed in living beyond my means.

      I’ve also learned another truth … when you buy a house, the work required never ends 😉


  23. Yes, I can see that you are indeed a very wealthy woman, Joanne. You’ve lived your life full and it shows in all you do!


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