“Resilient grieving” is a helpful book by Lucy Hone who was bereaved of her daughter and two friends in a car accident. In the chapter, “Facing the future”, she writes how identifying your loved one’s Giveaway, as well as your own, can be very useful in finding your way forward.
So what is this Giveaway? It is revealed as:
Lucy writes about her nephew Rufus whose physical health complications and intellectual disabilities from being born with Down’s Syndrome at first seemed to blight their family. But time revealed something else:
“Rufus, now twenty, was born with a Giveaway, born to teach us how to respect difference and diversity. As he strides forcefully through life, I’ve watched the way his presence has transformed a family, augmenting the life of his siblings and cousins and challenging the preconceptions of all those around him.”
The point is that all of us, no matter our limitations or abilities, no matter the particular path of our life, have something to give to the world. A Giveaway could also be called a legacy. It’s what we bring and it’s also what we bring out in other people, as in the case with Rufus.
“Recognizing your loved one’s Giveaway, I’ve come to believe, is an essential part of adapting to their loss. It gives theirs and our life meaning.
So if you haven’t done so already, can I suggest you boil the kettle, make yourself a hot drink, and sit down with a blank piece of paper and consider this:
What was your loved one’s legacy?
What was their Giveaway?”
Probably worthwhile thinking about our own at the same time!
Resilient Grieving by Lucy Hone, PHD. ISBN 978-1-61519-375-2. www.theexperimentpublishing.com