Monday, March 24, 2014

Last year was about me. This year is about others.

 Last year was all about me. I quit my job May 1, 2013, in pursuit of living life to the fullest every single day. I had, and still have this quote specifically positioned in my home, "you have been given another day". I am constantly reminded how fleeting life is and how amazing it is to be given another day!
 So for 2013, I traveled to my hearts content. I booked a west coast tour for my band. I saw friends and family all over the country. I met tons of new friends who opened their homes and everything they had to me. I saw and did just about everything I could have possibly hoped for! and it was fantastic!
 Arriving back home has been a bit of a culture shock. The desire to pick up and go again is so great, yet the need for community and friendship seems to be a greater pull, and so I stay. My 38th birthday was four days ago and I contemplate, what is the meaning of all this? Who hasn't said that, right? It's all dust in the wind, or something like that.
 I find myself alone. Though I have many friends, I spend time with few. My two closest friends I feel myself pushing away. So I join yoga. I read books. I contemplate. I sit alone. I change my lifestyle. Decrease my drinking (isolating myself even more). I increase exercise and healthy eating. Drink more water. Start a compost. Dream of a garden (but do nothing about it). I sit at my computer. I look for jobs, yet I don't want any of them. I think think think think. I can't stop thinking.
 So what am I doing with my life?
 At some point prior to my travels last year I began a mantra that I really did not want to adhere to, "I give what I have to those in need". Meaning, I may not feel as though I have much monetarily to give, but, what I do have, I give. Sounds simple enough? I can't say I followed through with it much, but it crossed my mind frequently. As it does now.
 If last year was all about me, why shouldn't this year be all about others? If I have everything that I need (and I suppose even if I don't) why not give what I have to those in need. You're getting the point. I want my life, the way I envision living it to it's fullest, to be a life of intentional giving. Not in an arrogant way that is paraded around, but in a simple, every day giving of what I have.
I wonder if I can intentionally give, DAILY. Intentionally. Daily. ( I repeat for dramatic effect and to make a point).
 So I begin. I share, one, so that I am reminded to seek out giving, two, to inspire a giving lifestyle in others, and three, because it has nothing at all to do with giving, and all about accepting, loving and meeting everyone where they are and joining together as one.

 I will backtrack later, but I will tell you about a rather easy giving feat for today because I am tired of sitting here typing. About a month ago, a friend's sister's husband died unexpectedly. A fund was started for the widow and her three small children. I thought to myself, I should give twenty dollars. I never got around to it. I've thought about it several times. They reached their small goal of five thousand dollars and then much more, yet the thought continued to linger way back in the darkest corner of my mind. Well, it poked it's little head out one more time today. I'll do it later, I thought, because donating now would mean that I would have to go all the way outside to my car, grab my coin purse, walk all the way back inside, and then donate. Sounds ridiculous that I contemplated putting it off to another day, right? So here I am at the very least a month later, credit card in hand and donation made! No one has to know but me and I, if nothing else, have cleared space up in that dark corner of my mind for visions of sugarplums or something.

Lesson: Follow the little inclinations to give.

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