Tuesday, June 19, 2012

30 Day of Joy: Day 19-Giving

Today I want to talk about the joy of giving.  I think that giving means a lot of different things.  If you look at the definition, giving means:
to present voluntarily and without expecting compensation; bestow: to give a birthday present to someone.
I think that there are a lot of interpretations.  Many people volunteer for organizations.  During the holidays and at occasions, we give presents to one another.  I have been thinking about examples of giving that I have seen in the last few days.

I believe that as parents we practice the art of giving with our children.  As our children become adults, we are careful to find ways to continue that giving as they exert their adulthood and navigate their way as adults.  This usually means that we parents give in areas of our talent.  My daughter-in-law is very lucky that her mother is a nurse in the obstetrics unit at the hospital where she labored.  Her mother was wonderful in ensuring that her daughter got the best care and support she needed during delivery.  This was a unique talent that she was able to provide for her daughter.  I think that this was a wonderful example of giving from parent to adult child.  She is also an exceptional cook and has prepared many meals for their freezer so that they have food readily at hand.  I believe that she is a wise mother who trusts her daughter to care for the baby and herself while offering her support in a meaningful way.  What a great mother to have!

Since the other grandmother was with her daughter during delivery, I was with our granddaughter.  She is very comfortable with both of us.  However, I don't possess the same skillset that her other grandmother does.  I knew it was important for my son to know that their daughter was secure and taken care of during this whole process.  So, I was able to give him comfort by agreeing to be there for my granddaughter.  I feel like this was a team effort with both grandmothers giving what was needed to our children.

I think that we were all very pleased to see how my granddaughter has welcomed her little brother.  She smiles, points at him, and says, "A baby!" with such excitement.  She gives him her blanket and favorite cuddly toy to comfort him.  For a 21 month old, her spirit of giving is inspiring.  How wonderful this world would be if we all gave so readily and with such love!

To me, the gift of a person's time is the most precious form of giving.  I think that it is often the hardest in the times in which we live.  When I think back to the years when my children were very young and I was working, what they wanted most from me was my time.  They needed me to be present in their world focused on them.  I always made this a priority.  There were many times when my house was a mess and I was exhausted, but I took the time to be with them.  Now that they are adults, I find that this has turned around and that the time they spend with me is the greatest gift they can give to me.

I have written a lot about my older son over the last few days, but I need to thank my younger son.  He lives at home with us while going to college and is working at Canterbury Park again this summer in their video department.  (Third year!)  He is so giving of his time.  There are many nights that we watch shows together and talk about technology.  He is the one who has stayed up with me after I was injured to make sure that I was okay or to get me medication.  I thoroughly enjoy being with him, listening to him, learning from him, and talking with him.  His form of giving is one that I value very highly, and I love him for it!

I am a very fortunate woman in the family I have and the giving I experience because of them  This giving and receiving brings me tremendous joy.  I will continue to look for ways to give to my family and friends and to receive the joy that comes with it.  What about you?

Have you found your joy today?

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