The Gift of Giving

Mumof2.com_flowerpainting, gift of giving, mumof2

I haven’t had exactly what I would call the greatest June on record. I have, however, had many snippets and moments in time that I will remember for a very long time to come (for the right reasons!).

Some wise chap once told me a story that involved him trying to do something nice for someone.  They had wanted some equipment and he was very clued up on the item in question. He had gone off to research it and told them that he would buy it as a gift for them but they would have to wait for about a week.  He was also quite excited and knew it was something that they really wanted. He then got a message saying not to worry, they didn’t want to wait and had bought something that wasn’t as good and much more expensive than the one he was going to give them. All they had to do was wait 5 days and he knew it was not an urgent purchase. He was quite hurt and angry and explained that sometimes people forget the gift of giving. He had really wanted to give this gift and the feeling of doing something nice for someone else had been taken away.

It’s a story I have thought about a lot since I heard it and I recently was in the ‘receiver position’ as I call it. I had gone back to South Africa to see our family as my gran had passed away. It was a short visit as I needed to get back to the UK.

On my return flight, I had a little time at the airport lounge and was looking through a stand of paintings and drawings. I have been looking for a specific painting but have not had much luck in finding it.

The lady who owned the stand was just such a happy lady. She was from Mozambique and her and her brother had been doing the paintings together. We chatted and I hadn’t told her the reason for my trip but looking through her paintings that I hadn’t found ‘the one’. I have been looking for a painting for a while and whilst I liked her paintings, they wouldn’t fit in with the ones I had at home. We carried on chatting away.

Suddenly, she looked at me and asked if I had children. I answered yes, 2 boys. She then took me to some smaller paintings and said ‘I can’t have you leave without a painting – I would like to give you 2 as gifts’. I looked at her and thought ‘You are a complete stranger and don’t know me from a bar of salt, yet you are being so kind. You need this money and yet you are willing to give something for nothing’. I then remembered the conversation with the wise old chap about the gift of giving and then accepted her offer.

Together, we found the pastel drawing you see above that she had done herself. We looked to see if we could find another one but nothing really stood out like it and I said to her I was more than grateful for the one we had chosen. She wrapped it up very carefully so as not to get wet.

I flew the 15 hour journey still questioning how this person could have been so kind? Whenever I look at her painting, I am reminded of her actions and fully understand the gift of giving.





30 thoughts on “The Gift of Giving”

  1. That’s deep. It’s so hard to truly freely give and (probably) harder to receive. I like your story and it has made me think lots. Perhaps some of our relutance (at some level and not in your story) is down to not wanting to feel beholden or at some level suspecting people’s motives. Personally I hate the whole Christmas thing where we all swap silly presents we don’t really want or opt out and give vouchers. I am trying to get J Boy to appreciate that it really is the thought that counts, but it’s tough.

    1. Thanks for stopping by and your kind words!

      Good luck with J Boy – would love to hear how you get on as I am still trying to help our 2 figure that part of life out x

  2. wow what a really intense moment and post! i think this lady’s generosity has now had more of an impact than she ever thought possible. It is so nice to hear of such things that make you glad to be part of the human race 🙂

    Thank you so much for sharing this with #MagicMoments its been one for me just reading x

  3. Her gift of giving has been spread through you and now has me thinking about it. Fascinating to think that such a gift can continue far further than you’ll ever know. Lovely post.

  4. That is such a great story and so beautiful. There are truly some wonderful people in the world as long as we’re open to meeting them and accepting of it.I love the idea of giving and accepting gifts. Wonderful art work too.

    1. I am loving #magicmoments today and am so glad I have finally found some time to get back to blogging. Thanks for stopping by and for your kind words x

  5. Excellent story and in today’s world of materialism and greed even more important, I had a discussion with my son recently who had found out Santa is not “real” and told him it is the gift of giving and receiving that is Christmas, this story illustrates that beautifully…

    1. It’s such a difficult thing to help children learn Nats and I spose the realisation and magic of finding out that ‘the man who does things out of the goodness of his heart’ ie. Santa is not real may be the right time to start learning. Although I personally would love it if they took longer to learn ‘the truth’ x

  6. What a lovely story. You are so right, sometimes I think we feel uncomfortable when people do things for us or give is gifts and refuse it out of kindness or embarrassment not realising that we are hurting the ‘giver’. This has definitely made me think more about the gift of giving and how you sometimes just have to accept people’s kindness and generosity. Lovely post xx

  7. This is a such a beautiful reminder of the importance of receiving gracefully. We really should stop being too suspicious or impatient or proud to accept such kindness.

  8. Lovely post. You are absolutely right, more often than not we forget how nice it is to give. I loved the term “the gift of giving”.

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