Help For Sale

Posted: July 27, 2011 in Life
Tags: , , ,

Hi. My name’s Stephanie and I’m a giver, not a taker. And I don’t mean that in a dirty way. Perverts. Now say hi back like we’re at an AA meeting. (Hi Stephanie!) Here’s the thing. I think that sometimes we say the whole, “I’m a giver, not a taker,” thing like it should win us points or something. Like in this game of Life we’re playing, saying that will allow us to get to a Pay Day sooner, but sometimes I feel like being a self-proclaimed giver just ends up giving me a headache.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been someone who likes to help others. I put extra change in the Salvation Army kettles at Christmas, I volunteer, I donate to canned food drives, I hold doors for other people, I drop my own things at a moment’s notice to help someone else, I do things that aren’t expected of me for people I care about simply because I care about them. Here’s the thing though. I’m not as selfless as I would like people to believe, or even as selfless as I claim to be. Let me explain. I absolutely find joy in helping others, knowing that something I did is going to benefit someone else makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I believe that truly selfless giving means that you give what you can and you don’t expect anything in return. And I don’t. I never expect anything in return…BUT….sometimes I’d like something in return.

Sometimes I have that “I’ll scratch your back, you scratch mine” mentality, and while that may be human nature–I think it negates the giving spirit. Maybe I’m way off base here and am just being too hard on myself, but I’d be lying if I said there wasn’t a small part of me that doesn’t want something good to happen to me as a result of doing a good deed. Now before you scoff at me–know this. I absolutely, positively do not do the good things that I do BECAUSE I believe it’s going to bring something good about. I don’t EXPECT to get repaid for the things I do–but sometimes I find myself wishing that it happened anyway.

Does that make me selfish? I don’t think so. I think it makes me human, it’s just something I struggle with because I want to be this unbelievably gracious person who never has a fleeting thought about how it’d be nice if karma finally showed her face.

I know it may not sound like it, but I’m happy–one of the happiest people I know in fact. I honestly believe that a huge part of my happiness centers around the fact that I enjoy helping people as much as I do, and that really is true. I’m not that person who when asked about their hobbies or interests says, “Oh, I just LOVE helping people,” to earn brownie points with whoever I’m talking to. I really do like seeing someone smile, knowing that something I did put that smile there. It’s in that brief moment that it seems like all is right with the world, and I suppose it’s that moment I should focus on.

I think we could all use a little help in the helping people department. Some people are guilty of helping themselves too much, I’m guilty of the opposite–of helping OTHER people too much. Maybe in a way I almost resent my giving nature–I resent the fact that I give so easily and openly, which has sometimes lent itself to me getting walked all over. But in the same sense, what’s the alternative? Not helping people? Just typing those three words caused me to start having shakes.

So I think I keep doing what I’m doing–but try to be more giving about my giving. If people want to take advantage of it, or choose not to appreciate it–that’s on them, not on me. Those unappreciative ones come around, but in my mind that can’t learn to appreciate you and what you’re doing if you stop helping them–then they won’t have anything TO appreciate.

So help somebody today. Hold a door, pick up a purse, smile at someone. EVERYONE needs help whether they want to believe it or not, but do your part and don’t expect anything in return. If you do get something, you turn around and give it right back to someone else. If we all did that, maybe we really could just all get along.

  1. wmarsau says:

    We are put on this eartth to be servants to God and those around us. Sometimes we lose sight of that, but that is our real purpose.

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