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"Tampa Bay Time supported me through a stressful year following four major shocks I experienced in a single week. I learned I have a difficult illness. I lost my closest friend whom I'd cared for during two operations and her long struggle with cancer. Back home after the funeral I discovered that water and mold had destroyed my home--walls, furniture, closets, electronics, clothing, family antiques & pictures and the research archives from which I'd planned to write another book. Then my insurance company told me that while I was away, my homeowner's policy had lapsed and the grace period had expired. People say crises teach you who your real friends are, and TBT friends mobilized for me, photographing black walls, green linens and antiques, collapsed cabinets and soggy music, art and books. They screened contractors and attorneys, rented storage units, and salvaged/sorted/cleaned/packed belongings to store or haul to the dump. They offered massage, acupuncture, yard work and places to live while the condo was being demolished and rebuilt from the studs up. But most importantly, TBT friends offered companionship, forgave the loss of my usual gregariousness, and kept me laughing, for a full year, in spite of my grumpy self. Who knows how I would have made it through without them!" - Marie Nelson @ Tampa Bay Time, Florida http://tampabaytime.org/ . #timebankingis #community #50storiesin50days #timebanks #story #timeasmoney #rebuilding

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Reflection by Edgar Cahn

We tend to think of TimeBanking in terms of individual acts of caring. The math is 1=1. But in this case, 1 + 1 is more than 2.  It is a relationship. With TimeBanking, that relationship is squared and squared and squared again.  We tend to think of living in terms of separate parts: our health, our friends, our home, our possessions. Together the parts define who we are.  And the whole is more than the sum of the parts.  We are living beings in a living world.  Each of us creates our own space, where the pieces flow together to create our individual identity as a living being in a unique ecosystem.

In Marie’s case that whole ecosystem came apart, all at once: her own illness, the loss of her closest friend to cancer, a home destroyed by mould, family antiques with their own history lost, and research archives that were to birth her next book, all lost. And her fall-back gone: an insurance policy, that had lapsed because she was caring for a dying friend.

Then came TimeBanking and a community of TimeBank members. One + One rebuilt that world with her and for her. The new home was more than a physical structure. That home was habitat; it provided massage and acupuncture, yard work, companions, and laughter.

TimeBanking is more than arithmetic. Transactions become relationships and relationships create a living, changing mosaic – a three dimensional work of art that celebrates life.  A work of art that TimeBanking brings to life in that fourth dimension: Time – not mechanical time but Living Time.