I'm a little self-centered and sometimes I need to be reminded of that. My friend Ruth is only too happy to oblige.
We were talking on the phone recently and I was listing my husband's charity work.
For years now he has been driving about an hour and a half to clear a trail for the Nature Conservancy.
Recently, he has added weekly volunteer work at a child welfare agency that helps underprivileged and developmentally delayed kids. He had to have fingerprinting and background checks twice, recommendations from three people who aren't family and a physical before he was cleared to volunteer there.
Then last week, he announced that on his only day off, he was going to work at Habitat for Humanity.
He took Tucker with him, who seems to be following in his father's volunteering footsteps.
Of course, I think it's great for both of them to help others. I'm proud of them. But their activities make me start taking an account of my own actions.
I organized the refreshments for the school's musical evening. That took at least an hour of emailing. I'm on the board of the swim team and we meet at least once a year along with answering emails and texts from the coach. No, my volunteer hours don't seem to compare.
So I was feeling a little guilty as Earl and Tucker traipsed off on a cold, rainy night to build a house for the poor.
"Do you think he's only doing it to make me feel guilty?" I asked Ruth as we talked on the phone.
"I think," she said, "that it's not about you."
That gave me something to think about.
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