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My Kinky Habit: Giving

So my secret is this: I like to give. I like to give because I like to get. It's selfish, really, but I'm sort of addicted. The more I do it the more I want. It's a pretty good jones.
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I have a secret pleasure.

It's not dirty but it's definitely deceptive. Doing this makes me seem better than I am, look better than I look after a root job and a blow dry. It's almost like a massage but totally different. Better than hitting the jackpot without having to smell the smoke in Vegas.

I grew up poorer than my peers, financially and otherwise. I wished for gigantic relief, like applause and adoration, 'Godot' type things which even if received can never be enough. I waited and I worked hard but those fantasies were (fortunately) never fulfilled in the form I'd imagined. Instead, and despite myself, I learned a little patience.

Because I began to heal, I finally noticed a wonderful man I'd known for twenty years. We married and he taught me about love and mercy. I took in the love he gave me and let it fulfill me until I wanted to share it with the world.

I became a psychotherapist, a rare profession that allows for aging, wisdom and the lack of etiquette typically expected in polite conversation. All I had to do was show up with my whole heart, an open mind and my Soul. At the end of the day I got to bring home the glory: I'd walked with people on their journeys and they got better.

We had a daughter and I was able to give her so many of those intangible and concrete things I'd ached for as a child. She became beautiful and I healed some more. My husband and I adored her and We healed some more.

Friends had always been everything to me. They still are. They were sometimes found in unlikely circumstances, comrades in unreasonably long lines, strangers at strange parties, walking their dogs in the neighborhood.

My father had an eighth grade education. It took me half a century to appreciate anything about him. He gave me some beautiful advice, "Shari, don't be afraid, go up to people and introduce yourself." My mother gave me life and she taught me how to dream. My sister gave me wisdom without even trying. And my friends saved my life. Loved ones are the pride I wear. What else is there?

So my secret is this: I like to give. I like to give because I like to get. It's selfish, really, but I'm sort of addicted. The more I do it the more I want. It's a pretty good jones. Giving anonymously is an orgasmic secret. Supporting good efforts is an honor. Loving the people in my life is a privilege. As anyone with this kinky habit can tell you, the amount is not what makes the gift valuable. Arguably, a gift from those who have less is more profound.

The 'giftees' get something but I always get more. I get to feel good inside. I mean really good. The kind of good that reverses negative self images and obsolete beliefs about the smallness of the world. I know what Christopher Columbus missed. The horizon continues and the spices are endless. Try this recipe for the holidays. It's delicious.