Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sacred Life Sunday: Giving

I have found my life profoundly impacted by asking, "What can I give?" sometimes instead of "What do I want?" lately. For example, I have been thinking that if I had normal energy like normal folks then I could have a normal life. Do a lot more than I did before. But what would I do? Would it be what I'm doing now? Or something else, something more? I still don't know the answer to this, but thinking about it, fantasizing about it, is fun.

See, there is a good chance that when I get over this energy slump, I may find a "new normal" of far enhanced energy. I do think that I've been in a menopausal slide that has gone on for many years but just recently got to the point where it kept me from being functional. So if I solve the problem at it's root, my life could be different, though exactly in what ways I'm not sure because I'm not there yet.

If I think "What do I want?" I kind of get lost, because I already have many of the things and experiences I want...I like my life the way it is in so many ways, and I don't really have a lot of wants--besides better health, of course. In my group "12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women", we had a chapter called "Following Your Fascinations" and I struggled to identify my fascinations that would be reflected in my daily work--specifically in what I'd earn money from doing.

But if I ask, "What can I give?" I can generate far more ideas, not just related to work, but to my daily life. Contemplating this question gets my creative juices flowing.

I applied this to another area of my life today. I am participating in Kristine's "The Husband Project" over at Notes From the Laundromat. It is based on the book with the same name. I wasn't going to do it but then just changed my mind a couple of days ago. But I've been coming up empty with the exercises. LoveHubbie is a workaholic and makes very little time available for anything else. Lots of times with him I think "What do I want?" and can think of lots and lots of things...but then tonight, when once again I was unable to complete the exercise due to his unwillingness to participate, I thought, "Ok, so what can I give?" and finally tonight I had a small success. I have been learning to do Lomi Lomi massage and I practiced on LoveHubbie in our new "massage area" of the bedroom. See the picture below:

think it looks very inviting!

The picture on the wall is hard to see, but it is an ahupua'a, a pie-shaped area of a Hawaiian island ruled by a chief and entirely self-sufficient at each level of elevation. The people at the shoreline fish, as you go up the mountain people grow taro, and higher up hunt, etc. Everyone shares and trades. Everyone has enough.

So anyway, I don't want to do this professionally or officially or anything, just to grasp the idea of the spiritual side of Lomi Lomi and to practice some techniques casually with LoveHubbie as a way of creating more positive energy and more aloha in my life. It makes me feel closer to Hawaii. And of course, LoveHubbie will benefit in lots of r&r--nightly I hope!

And I am going to keep on churning the idea of "giving" and especially of "legacy" around. At my age, legacy becomes even more important, and this powerful question, "What can I give?" fuels big ideas. It also resonates with my theme for the year of "JUMP!".

We shall see where this leads!


laundrygirl said...

That room looks peaceful and soothing.
Pretty cool.

Olivia said...

It is, Kristine. I like a very relaxing bedroom, and this one is. Peace tonight, O

Angela said...

Your massage area looks very, very inviting, O. Lucky LoveHubbie. :)

patti said...

LomiLomi massage is a wonderful way of loving & giving. Your massage space is very inviting. Lucky Lovehubbie!

Your post is in line with some thinking of mine lately. How do I participate more, give more. It all begins with the little things of course. Much food for thought here, thankyou!

CrystalChick said...

Beautiful post.
Sounds like a wonderful way to bring in more positive energy.
And if LoveHubbie is still too busy some nights, I can get my son to school in the morning and be across the country by dinnertime. ;)

Olivia said...

Thanks, Angela. I hope he thinks so, too.

Thanks for taking the time to comment here, Angela, since you have a full plate right now. I am thinking of you...



Olivia said...

Thanks, Patti. I have been thinking of this all day. The giving part. It turns everything around. I am very excited to have more energy and the opportunity to give more. I feel as though I have an abundant life, plus am at an age (51) where I would LOVE to be able to support younger (especially) women (especially) in some way. I wish I'd had a mother or female figure when I was young to help me through tough times and encourage me.

You are so right on in that it begins with the little things. What I have found is that even if no one notices, they edify ME.

Peace and love today,


Olivia said...

Hey Mary,

I may take you up on that! :) I started telling LoveHubbie, "Hey, how many people do you know who might want to take your place if you don't have time...?" I can look on craigslist...or get the word out some other way!

Mary---you have a wonderful sense of humor and I've enjoyed getting to know you better on blogs, Facebook, and Twitter!



Heather said...

Sounds like a good way to keep a relationship fresh. My husband knows that the best way to please me is a good backrub - perhaps I should send him for lessons! :-)

Olivia said...


:) I'd be glad to give him some lessons...if he returns the favor! Good to see you, Heather,

peace and love,


thailandchani said...

We're on the same track. :)

I've also been putting far more emphasis on what I can *give*.. instead of what I can *get*. It's not that I was ever greedy but I was neglected. In that neglect, I was always looking for a way to feel less that way. That was necessary for a while because we can't give from an empty well. I do know that.

Now that I've gone through that phase, I'm growing up a bit.. and now think in terms of what I can give. The "get" will take care of itself.

It's a change I really like... and makes the world look much better.


Kerstin said...

Oh, I love the massage area. Lucky LoveHubbie indeed!

I am married to a very giving man who never asks for acknowledgment or anything in return. This may sound a little corny but the best gift to him is your happiness. And whatever makes him to be that way, it is quite genuine.

Then there is this friend of his who also gives a lot, but he does so because he needs the gratitude as a form of self validation. Feeling needed is what makes him feel better about himself.

For me, giving is an act of sharing myself. The more I have within me the more I can give. And I don't mean so much material things but the giving of time, listening, acceptance, empathy as well as tenderness and affection. Keeping the inner well filled has been one of my big challenges in life.


Olivia said...

Wow, Kerstin. Your husband continues to sound so wonderful. I think I understand this because he sounds like he is how a woman would be if she were a man---what pleasure there is in giving those we love happiness. What better thing could there be than that?

I don't want to seem sexist, but I probably am in that I haven't known many giving men, although I have known a few, a couple of whom even read this blog! And via the news and television, of course. Tom sounds like he is one of them, for sure.

I agree with you as well that we have to be in a place to give, be filled up ourselves. When we are depleted it is challenging.

When I'm depleted, I feel like I want to be alone, and it is harder for me to be giving.

I am enjoying this discussion very much.

I wish you energy and a great week,