Giving & Receiving

I AM Both the giver & the receiver
                          Giving & Receiving  
  Today I give freely without expectations….unaware that as I give I receive beyond measure from a benevolent universe.  Today, I open to receive what is being offered, aware of my gratitude to the love which radiates from my heart back into the circle of life.                                                                                                          
I AM both the Giver & the Receiver of a loving Creator.
Giving and Receiving appear at first to be separate acts.  For example, one person may appear to be giving their time, resources, or full attention to someone.  Perhaps you are sharing your unconditional love for a child, patience for a clerk, or a smile for a stranger you pass in an airport.  What happens when we give to one another?  What ripples do we create in our Universe when we share our authentic selves with one of God’s creations?  

Recently, my friend Jeri invited me, along with 7 other girlfriends, to Mexico to spend 4 days in a 6 bedroom luxury ocean front villa with a pool, a gifted chef, and all I had to do was fly there.  The villa & Chef were paid for.  This stone hacienda estate looked straight out of Architectural Digest and to top it off, it was whale season. Everyday from my ocean front suite, I could see in the distance humpback whales with their newborns breaking the ocean bay surface. Every night, I fell asleep to the endless waves stroking the coast line 100 feet below.  
On one level, it was my girlfriend’s generous gift….. an opportunity to experience nirvana, that I could not have achieved by myself.    After all she did pay for the villa and then invite me to share it along with 7 other extraordinary women.  But each day I became more aware that her initial offering triggered a cascade of events within the group.  It started with that single invitation.  
I discovered two new friends and  mended  an old and dear one.   Then there were the two gifted performers within our group of guests, singing to us  before dinners, one in opera style, the other in bluesy jazz.   Which one of us was giving or receiving?  The singer finding her reservoir of song and bringing it forward to share or the circle of women responding back to her with their full attention and deep appreciation?  
There were also several 4 legged residents of the villa.  But one in particular stopped you dead in your tracks when you first saw him.  Solid black, maybe 6 inches tall & with two bulging eyes that always seemed to be searching for YOU!  This tiny misshapen, crippled chihuahua would struggle with each step. It’s tiny, frail  body jerking, twisting in short spasms, falling down steps or crashing into furniture. At times it would knock itself unconscious.  This may have been a result of inbreeding or lack of oxygen at birth, we didn’t know but his name, Tonto or Tontito, said it all.  Translated:   Little silly thing. or as the chef told us, “Little idiot”.  But here is the beautiful part of Tonto.   If you held him & stroked his tiny boney body, he would actually stop shaking and relax into this bliss like  state.  From that moment forward, he knew the sound of your voice, the presence of your feet (he couldn’t see much above that) and like a heat seeking missile, he would search for you. You held in your hands all that he required and he would wait an entire day for you to return.  I watched my friend Ruth  hold Tonto for hours on her lap.  I wondered which one was giving & receiving. 
Then there were our daily morning circles, where we pulled inspiration cards which ignited personal stories…. each woman holding space for the other.  Together we created a safe space.  Some of us revealed our vulnerability or grief , while another story sent us into hysterical laughter. The Story teller would rotate and her circle of listeners adjust, but it was the repeated ancient pattern of women in circle giving & receiving that comforts me the most. 
 On our last day, we rented a boat and headed to an island to snorkel. . On that return trip we all began singing ‘Row Row Row Your Boat’ in multiple rounds, and as we finished, off to our left, an enormous humpback whale and her baby surfaced.  Surely it was a response to 9 women singing in harmony, hearts filled with gratitude for such a wonderful adventure.   Like the ceaseless waves beneath our boat or the silent sonic tones of the mother whale to her child, these gifts  just kept washing over us. 
9 women who give & receive 
                                            Nine Women ~ each are both The Giver & The Receiver
Perhaps it is the alchemy of the two…. the gold of giving and the silver of receiving…..when combined with authenticity &  zero attachment that transmutes the two into the pure energy of deep appreciation. It is this unconditional exchange between you and me, between you and nature, between you and your creator that circles back into this world to help it become a more loving place.   
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3 thoughts on “Giving & Receiving

  1. Chandra

    I’m moved to recall such an abundant time in the mood of spontaneous giving and receiving yet orchestrated by a quintessential giver, Jeri.


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