I entertained thoughts of writing a truly epic novel today (after two cups of coffee I hasten to add). The kind that makes a profound statement about the human psyche and prompts us all to question big picture stuff. I figured if George Orwell can do it, why can’t I?
Well, you can see how this quickly led me down a path that was never going to end well. Let’s just say the feeling of inadequacy speedily superseded any grandiose notion I had of offering up a special gift to the human race. I also wondered if I should lay off the coffee for a bit.
There are those who have scaled great heights and waged countless battles, sacrificed what others have not and given their all, in order to offer up their gift to the world.
Einstein, Hemingway, Martin Luther King Jr, Malala Yousafzai, Mark Zuckerberg, are a few names who come to mind, each imparting their own unique gift into this world.
Then, there’s me (or us, if I can be so bold as to include people such as myself) who aren’t quite there yet. I mean, we’re aiming for things, occasionally set goals but if we’re honest, haven’t quite figured out what it is that we’ve got, that’s even worth giving.
So, it’s apparent that I’m struggling to grasp what my special talent or vision is. I’ve got some time on my hands this week and I’m willing some epiphany my way, so that I might make a start before life gets in the way again.
Like most people, I’ve dabbled in an array of ‘hobbies’, I spose you’d call them. I’ve become a member of different social and community groups over the years. I’ve sat and attempted to answer those heavy questions that ruminate late at night, after a few wines and awkwardly always come up short.
There are plenty of people, (yes people, not super special or genetically modified) out there who are making their mark. Whether it be in the sporting arena, the business world, the arts or science they’re doing it. So why can’t I, we, the rest of us?
I’m reading these magazines lately targeted at middle aged women and it’s full of profiles and stories of Mumtrepreners putting their talents to the test and making a great go of their gift. Mmm, what can I offer?
Then there’s my bedtime viewing of TED talks with their bountiful supply of inspirational personal tales. I love them, but drift off the sleep feeling ever so slightly deflated at my own lack of offerings and am none the wiser on my own personal road to gift giving.
I do believe that we all have something to give, something that is ours alone to give. Our challenge is to discover this in time so that we can nurture it before imparting it to this world. And I’m worried I’m running out of time!
I’m wondering if my rather normal existence, in my rather safe home and with my rather sweet family and friends are to blame (in a good way). Maybe the conditions or circumstances aren’t right for me to uncover my gift? Perhaps there are variables beyond my control that need to come into play?
When I look at each of these people and their gracious gifts, I’m struck by a simple truth; maybe one just needs to live, exist and give of themselves to others, without the desire for return.
My husband has one of these gifts (among many I like to think). He has the ability to see the lighter side to things; wave an arm about, pull a weird look and a crack a silly joke all in the name of keeping a balanced perspective. And this is a gift (I’m sure you’ll appreciate) worth giving to someone such as myself.
One of my good friends has the generous ability to simply listen…..to me. She’ll patiently and determinedly wait it out while I squander time babbling on about all sorts of things. I truly marvel at and value this ability of hers and while I’ve mentioned many times what a wonderful listener she is, she’ll quickly mutter some humble utterance and smile.
These may not be gifts making a packet in the retail world or solving issues of inequality in society, but they’re unique gifts, given selflessly and of value to those who receive them. And over time, isn’t this the true meaning of gift giving.
So, I’m thinking I might start afresh tomorrow (maybe without the excess coffee) and simply try to be a good person to those around me and to myself. I’ll appreciate my ‘safe’ circumstances and try …..ok reeeeeally try, to let life just happen, content in the knowledge that that epic novel could still very well come to fruition, with a heap of hard work and sacrifice.