How's this for silly? I've wanted to blog about this for a few days, but I can't figure out a title, so I haven't! So I'm just going to write for a while and see if a title comes to mind.
As we approached the last day of school, Maya started to ask if we could get a gift for her teacher. I'd already contributed to the class gift, but that wasn't good enough for Maya. Some of her friends were bringing in gifts for Ms. C, and Maya felt left out, I think. She thought we should buy a pillow with a C on it, which was none too cheap, I might add. I just had this vision of Ms. C, who is early in her teaching career, accumulating TONS of tchotchkes sporting the letter C over the course of a 30+ year career. . . .
I'm trying to do more donation-in-your-name gifts these days; most everyone I know has WAAAY too much stuff. Now, not surprisingly, most of my charitable giving since Zoe was adopted has been to family preservation and orphan care organizations. So my first thought for Ms. C was maybe a donation to Love Without Boundaries. They even helpfully suggest that gift cards are great "if you are shopping for family, friends, or teachers."
But I found myself reluctant, though I love the work the group does, I've supported it in the past -- even donating a photo for their art auction at their request, I plan to continue to support it, I've blogged about it. . . .
Why couldn't I do it? Why couldn't I make a donation as a teacher gift for Maya's beloved teacher?
It wasn't about the organization, I realized.
It was about the recipient. And not really about the recipient, whom we love, but about the recipient's relationship with my child. It suddenly seemed to me that making a donation, in her teacher's name, to an orphan care organization in China, where my child was an orphan, highlighted that status. I didn't want a "poor-thing" reaction from her teacher. I didn't want Maya to look like a charity case.
So I'll make my annual donation to Love Without Boundaries. But no one will be getting a card telling them the gift is in their name. And Ms. C got a card telling her that a child in Africa now has a desk, courtesy of her.
Nope, still no idea for a title. . . .
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