The Extra Day

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What would you do if you were given an extra day with which to do anything you’d like? This year, we’ve got it! Yes, it’s leap year and Saturday, February 29th is a day we’d not normally see in a year.

Of course that Saturday would come whether we called it February 29th or March 1st. So in reality, it isn’t an extra day, but for purposes of life-examination it’s still useful to answer the question: “What would you do if you were given an extra day with which to do anything you’d like?”

For some, their lives are so exhausting that they’d use the day to nap. For some, their surroundings are so cluttered that they’d use the day to reorganize. Others would give themselves a spa day or visit a favorite place that brings them joy. Some would gather with friends and family for a meal. And others might just waste the opportunity to do something new, creative or rejuvenating by just doing what they always do.

The saying “time is money” is a truth but “time is value” is even more true. What we do with our time indeed reveals what we value. Too often the routines of our lives dull our sense of value. The time we spend at an unfulfilling job wears on us. The do-the-laundry, make-another-dinner, drive-the-kids-everywhere life has us in constant motion, but often leads to a flat-line experience without joy. Different levels of depression become the norm for some who are caught up in a rat race living or afflicted with sadly boring days.

So why not pretend you are getting an extra day? Why not answer the question about what you’d like to do with that extra day? And then, go for it! Perhaps you could work your plan in on Saturday the 29th. Or maybe it would work better on another day. But don’t miss the chance to seize an opportunity to use some time to recreate, to go beyond the usual, to do something of value with people you love.

The attitude that would help us in this exercise is one that could live on throughout the rest of this leap year. No need to restrict our imaginations to just one extra day. We can look for more frequent opportunities to live more fulfilling, more value-filled lives.

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Pastor of St. Bernard's since 2013 and known for his engaging homilies and community presence, Father Ralph Sommer is also a treasured columnist for the Levittown Tribune.

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