Sunday, December 18, 2011

the gift of a day

I gave my friend a gift today. It wasn’t a gift I could wrap and it didn’t cost any money. It was, the gift of a day. A precious gift of time to herself and I felt so joyous to give it.

My friend is a mum raising her four-year-old daughter on her own. To any mother, time to themselves is a rare and fleeting commodity to a mother flying solo with their children it is even more elusive. So, a whole day for my friend to be, think and feel as she wanted. No questions to answer, socks to be found, stories to be told, games to be played. Just her own thoughts to be had. Uninterrupted.

I love giving gifts and I got so much out of this one because I understood how much it meant. Even when during the day the children squabbled and Sol cried and my friend’s daughter asked, ‘Can you do something about the crying?’ I just smiled to myself and thought of my friend and I felt so happy.

My point of sharing this is not to say ‘how good am I?!’ rather to take a moment to shine a light on the incredible work parents do, the energy it takes to parent and to the importance of supporting each other to do it – especially those parents doing it on their own.

Each day really is a gift. Christmas drawing closer, the coming together of family and friends is causing me to feel reflective and immensely grateful for the gift of each day, for the gift of children, my own and other people’s, and for family and friends.

Surprise a friend with a gift of a day or a gift of a meal. Not because they're sick, or they have an appointment, or they're grieving, or just had a baby. Just because.

Happy gift giving.

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