Last year, I had a conversation that changed my life.

It caused me to upend everything and move across the country.

The lesson from it may change yours:
I was out for a drink with a friend.

We’ll call him George.

As we settled in, George asked about my life and how I was feeling.

At first, I gave him the standard response that we’ve all grown so accustomed to:

“I’m good. Busy!"

He stared blankly through my empty words.
Feeling the pressure of his gaze, I adjusted myself and added that living in California had begun to wear on me, it being so far from my parents on the East Coast.

I had been 3,000 miles away for the last 12 years.

And with the path I was on, there was no end in sight.
The moment of vulnerability sparked an interaction that changed my life:

George: “How often do you see your parents?"

Me: “Maybe once a year now.”

George: “And how old are they?"

Me: “Mid-sixties."

George: “Ok, so you’re going to see them 15 more times before they die.”
Gut punch.

I took a deep breath.

It wasn’t meant to be rude—it was just…math.

If the average life expectancy is ~80 years, my parents are in their mid-60s, and I see them one time per year, the math—however depressing—says I will see them 15 more times before they are gone.
Our time together is finite, but we often fail to recognize it until it's too late.

Time is cruel.

You’ll love it with all of your being—you may even pray for more of it—but time doesn’t care about you.

Your relationship with time is the ultimate unrequited love.
The morning after this conversation, my wife and I had a very candid conversation about what we wanted in life.

A few days later, we listed our house in California on the market, packed up our things, and shipped off to the East Coast to be closer to our parents.
It’s been over a year since the conversation that changed my life.

I'll never regret these tiny moments—of doing nothing in particular—that we'll spend together in the years ahead.

I’ll never regret the moments my parents get to spend with my son.

I’ll never regret any of it.
My friend @waitbutwhy wrote about this "Parent Time" phenomenon in a recent New York Times op-ed.

In classic fashion, he produced a striking visualization to capture the sentiment.

It brings one takeaway to life: Our time with our loved ones is so limited and precious.
All of this math—depressing as it seems—should be a call to arms.

Identify the people and activities you care most deeply about. Prioritize them ruthlessly.

It may be difficult—even painful—but it’s a decision you’ll never regret.
We spend most of our lives playing a game:

Everything we do is in anticipation of the future. When that future comes, we simply reset to the next one.

“I can’t wait until I’m 18 so I can [X].”

“I can’t wait until I’m 25 so I can [Y]."

“I can’t wait until I’m 45 so I can [Z]."
It’s natural, but it’s a dangerous game—one that we will lose, eventually.

Time is our most precious asset and the present is all that’s guaranteed.

Spend it wisely, with those you love, in ways you’ll never regret.
Always remember the famous song by Guy Lombardo:

Enjoy yourself, it's later than you think.
Enjoy yourself, while you're still in the pink.
The years go by, as quickly as a wink.
Enjoy yourself, enjoy yourself, it's later than you think.
I hope this thread sparks some of you to have conversations with your loved ones about time (and who you want to spend yours with).

Follow me @SahilBloom for more writing like this.

I will continue to write on these topics in my newsletter as well.
This is what it’s all about.

This photo warms every ounce of my being.

The best parents a guy could have asked for.

The best grandparents Roman could have asked for.
By the way, the point of this thread isn’t saying that any decision about where to live is *right* or *wrong*.

My goal is to emphasize the precious nature of time and spark active discussion with you and your loved ones about the tradeoffs and decisions that this creates.
We all have to reach our own conclusions.

These are often very challenging decisions with a variety of complex tradeoffs.

Generally speaking, as an observation, I do think fewer people regret making the decision to live close to family later in life (vs. the alternative).
I’d expect that in a future where remote/hybrid work becomes the norm, these decisions become easier to make.

In this future, the career limiting fears that previously held back many would-be movers may wane.

Something for companies considering employee happiness to consider.
These moments are the reason we moved back to be closer to family.

Roman showing my Dad around the house.

More of the moments I’ll never regret!

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Great thread. Prioritizing family isn’t always fun but it’s worth it

One of the best things I read, ever