Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A hug from the heart

I took my niece and nephew to Crossword on Sunday evening and told them to pick out any one book each for themselves. They were thrilled to bits. It is lovely to see unrestrained delight in children’s eyes. They ended up picking out two books each; how could I consider refusing them such small pleasures. I asked them for a hug and a kiss in return for the books. They agreed to the hug but denied the kiss! I was puzzled. My cousin told them that if they refused to give me a kiss they would only get a book each. I mulled over this for a bit and then kicked myself for almost going along with that. How could I bribe these two beautiful children into something that they obviously did not want to do? Who am I to demand a kiss in return? These gestures of affection have to come naturally or they do not mean anything.

I told them that they did not have to hug me if they did not want to. A simple ‘Thank You’ would do just fine. After billing the gifts, they thanked me politely. They turned away then came back, hesitating with each tiny step and then hugged me tight; once, twice ... laughter rippling across the store as they ran away. It was such wonderful feeling. I was elated; forget the kiss. The hug, given with so much enthusiasm was reward enough; I am smiling just thinking about it.

Conclusion: If people are not willing to give you something or show you affection, let it go. If it is meant from the heart, you will get it anyway. If not, the feeling was never there to begin with.

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