We’ve all heard the old saying “It’s better to give than to receive.” Lately, I’ve been experiencing the truth of that. I had somehow gotten to a place where I wasn’t inspired to give very often – not of my money, my time, or my Self. I didn’t realize it, but I also felt a disconnection from my fellow human beings. Where these two related? I’m not sure.
After inheriting some money from my mother’s estate, I started practicing giving financially. With a little money in my pocket, I could afford to be more generous when I tipped good service. Our local grocery is always collecting for something at the check stands; I could say “yes” more often. Every time I surprised a server, bought a bag of food for the hungry or donated to prostate cancer research, I felt good – not just because someone else was benefiting from my ability to give, but because my heart was thawing.
I didn’t realize what was happening at the time, but now I find I am often excited to give. Over the months, as I practiced giving, I began to look forward to the next time I could give a homeless person a few bucks or buy a candy bar to help a neighborhood kid’s soccer team. I began seeing the human being behind those requests. I’ve known people who went to bed hungry; I know cancer survivors. Once I could put a face to a cause, I began to see that I could make a difference.
As I work through coach training, I am finding opportunities to do scholarship work with certain underserved populations – and I’m so excited by the possibilities! Not just because the work will be interesting, not just because I can provide a valuable service, but also because I know what it is like to stand in witness to another person’s life, and I’m eager to have that experience again. I’m eager to connect with other people in a real, deep, way and I know that as I say “yes” to the chances that come my way, I’ll have even more opportunities.
The truth is that we get when we give if we are open to the experiences and relationships that can develop. I’ll be honest here, I’m not giving out of obligation, or even because it’s the “right” thing to do. I’m giving because it makes me feel good and it enhances the meaning in my life. And on that count, I may be getting more out of the arrangement than the people I hope to work with!
About a year ago, I came together with almost 400 other creative souls in Kelly Rae Robert’s Taking Flight class. It was an amazing experience. The course information was good, but the community that sprang up around that class has been even better. The community alone is worth the price of admission! We call ourselves the Fly Tribe.
Kelly Rae is teaching the class one last time. To celebrate our year’s anniversary, many of us have chipped in and will be able to donate eight classes for a giveaway. The exciting part is that Kelly Rae is matching us, one-for-one, so there will be a total of 16 classes given away! If you’d like to put your name in the virtual hat, drop by the Fly Tribe blog and leave a comment.
To further celebrate our anniversary, we are hosting a blog hop. Be sure to drop by some of the other participating blogs and read their stories!
Janet Forrest http://www.tatterednworn.wordpress.com
Cat Athena Louise http://www.catathenalouise.com
Stacey Bockness Curry http://starhitchedwagon.blogspot.com/
Kris Lanae Binsfeld http://cherishdesigns.wordpress.com/2012/08/19/giving-flight-giving-back/
Mary Sterk http://www.justmarydesigns.com
Michelle Reynolds http://www.shellsinthebush.com
Constance Rawlins http://livingwithinyourharvest.com/2012/08/19/fly-tribe-anniversary/
Cindy Jones Lantier http://www.lantier.org/2012/08/the-gift-of-giving/
Kathleen Conard http://newfromoldcreations.blogspot.com/2012/08/giving-back.html
Claudia Dow http://www.claudiadow.blogspot.com
Sofia Dabalsa http://sofiadabalsa.blogspot.com
Ursula Smith http://EasyScraps.com/blog
Deborah Eaton http://www.deborahgeaton.com/blog/
Creative Clearinghouse http://creativeclearinghouse.com/Online-Class-Reviews/blog/2012/447/Spirit-Giving
Lenore Angela http://lenoreangela.blogspot.ca/2012/08/giving-back.html
Katharina Star http://www.blog.katharinastar.com
Rachél Payne http://wp.me/pWRyw-10P
Sherry Richert Belul http://www.simplycelebrate.net/cherry-blossom-soup/gifts
Shannon Etnyre http://www.livingwithumami.com
Live Laugh Love Retreats http://livelaughloveretreats.com
Kelley Miller Artworks http://kelleymillerartworks.blogspot.com/
Diane Enright http://dianeenrightphotography.wordpress.com/
Susan Dietz http://flutterbeforeyou.blogspot.com
Kim Hyer http://www.apaperaddict.com
Tina Carlborg http://www.tinachicky.blogspot.com
Catherine Pistone http://catherinepistone.blogspot.com/
Mary MacIlvain http://maryart.macilvain.com
Carolyn Chenault http://carolynchenault.wordpress.com/2012/08/20/the-big-giveaway