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Destinations, Dreams and Dogs - International adventure with a fast-track family (& dogs) of Old World values, adopting the Russian-Italian-American good life on the go…!

The Lost Art of Sharing

Forget the kids, horror of horrors, Benedetto and I had to share the other day.  I know it’s unthinkable in this day and age when everyone has their own “whatever”, be it phone, car, bathroom, sink, closet, computer, and yes, of course, toys.

He forgot his laptop’s powercord at the other house.  We’d be gone about three days.  Could he make it?

Yes, if he swiped my cord.

After all, the kids needed their cords and computers for school-!  But we needed ours for work, round the clock work, and whenever we weren’t in the office work where we could all use this computer or that.

He said he would simply go out to the local Apple store and pick up another powercord.  However, our loaded days being what they are, he never got around to it.  Which meant… sharing.

Took some getting used to again, took some trading off—you work, I work, you work, I work, rinse, repeat—took some prioritizing—is everything desperately urgent… all the time?

Elie Wiesel said, “Friendship marks a life even more deeply than love. Love risks degenerating into obsession, friendship is never anything but sharing.”

The two of us, for those three days, talked more than usual.  We were more keyed into each other’s individual schedules.  We were polite and inquired if this might be a good time to use the cord for a while?

I read a report a few years back by a psychologist saying that the worst thing that happened to the American family was the cessation of the need to share.  No more centrally-located telephone or television, as many kids lived out self-centered lives, behind closed, individualistic bedroom doors.  Sharing often carried with it the negative connotation of being “deprived” in one way or another these days.  Consequently, negotiation and the everyday need to give and take were lacking in most homes.  What isolating, egocentric effect would this have on our society?

I can attest to this quote by American author Mark Twain, “To do good is noble. To tell others to do good is even nobler and much less trouble.”

It might be less trouble, but it’s not as much fun.  To share is to have to participate in the life of another, and not only on our terms, and when it’s convenient for us.  It was rather refreshing.

Do you have items in your family that you actually share?



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2 Comments : Leave a Reply

  1. avatar Winnie says:

    Hubby and I share a personal computer. He has a laptop that is always with him for work, but he doesn’t surf the internet or look at his FB page on it. My “work” on the computer is pretty limited to some volunteer stuff so it’s not usually too pressing unless I’ve been procrastinating. The whole family shares the one full bath and that is a pain. Five people, one shower/tub, usually takes some logistical planning if we are all going out somewhere at once. Most of the time not a big issue as kids bathe at night and Hubby leaves for work early and I’ll shower after I drop the kids at school. We do have a TV in our bedroom but we mostly watch T.V. as a family in the Living Room. It does make sense that less sharing in a family is isolating us more, however you could argue that it limits the mundane logistical planning of daily life and lets us move on with more important things and conversations instead of bickering that “Sally was on the phone for 45 minutes today and I only got to talk to Bill for 5 minutes because Mom had to make a phone call”

    • avatar admin says:

      I know what you mean, Winnie. We’re pretty blessed to have our own everythings (except for TVs and major electronics for every child, that’s where I draw the line–while they do have computers or DVD players to help with school). Our kids are pretty flexible bec. they know I’ll blow a gasket if we go somewhere like a foreign country (or an area that seems foreign, lol) and they actually have to “share” whatever, and suddenly they’re “suffering” with one or two bathrooms instead of four or five. That’s when I sit them down and talk about outhouses in Russia, or having a few pairs of shoes that you’re not really thrilled with -vs- no shoes in Russia…. Aiiiyygghhh!

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