Need to Be Needed

Hi, how is everyone?

I am doing alright. Wasting a beautiful Sunday. I need to actually DO something!

…..OK. Back again. I have gotten the plants in from ‘summer vacation’ on the deck, cleaned a bathroom and put in a load of laundry. I hate housework but I have to say one thing about it: there is always something small to do to get you started. Breaks through the inertia.

After I cleaned a little, I took the Beastie Baby to the ‘beach’. Just about her favorite thing in life is going for a walk. She loves her Mommy at least in part because I do these things for her.

Since I am no longer driving, walkies have become either neighborhood strolls or ‘adventures’ taken according to her Daddy’s schedule and whim. I have gotten a little distressed at times because I don’t feel as if I am doing good enough a job in satisfying the Baby’s needs. We used to be able to go adventuring nearly every evening.

People say they what to be independent and have no responsibilities to others, but I would say that is pretty much untrue. I think being needed and being able to do for others are pretty basic desires in people.

I looked for scholarly articles on being needed and I got pretty much nothing. There were articles about being pathologically needy. There was even an article talking about how some counselor tried to convince an elderly man he was not “supposed to” miss feeling as if he were needed and contributing. Really????? What was all that about?

Since most of the articles talked about how ‘bad’ it was to want to be needed, I started to think I was wrong. Then I recovered my wits ? and decided, of course I am not wrong! My terms were wrong!

I started looking for things that talked about the desire to be useful and only got slightly further. There just does not seem to be a lot of scientific information on the desire to be useful. Sort of surprised me because I consider being able to do for others a great way to build social relationships and self-esteem.

I finally ended up looking at philosophy and religion. It may not be scientifically validated but I tend to believe what this guy has to say. Specifically, he remarked he starts every day with a simple prayer: to be useful to others. He says he has a desire to be helpful, to assist others. He sees it as a way to serve humanity. That is sort of his job.

Who is he? Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama. He is believed to be the incarnation of compassion, literally.

Not bad company over all. And by the way, the Dalai Lama is 81 years old( 7/6/1935). Who says older (and slightly the worse for wear) people should not want to be useful?

Next: Taking Time

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