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Excerpted from Self-Nurture by Alice Domar. Copyright © 2000 by Alice Domar and Henry Dreher. Excerpted by permission of Penguin Putnam Inc.  All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.   HTML and web pages copyright © by SpiritSite.com.
 


"What I find utterly remarkable was our total lack of hesitation about beseeching Annís brothers to do something for us that was strictly for our own enjoyment."

Alice Domar
Self-Nurture
, Part 1

Have you ever experienced one of those moments when after thinking and thinking about a problem for days and days, maybe even dreaming about it, then suddenly something triggers this amazing insight and you either solve the problem or at least understand why you were so bothered by it?

Well, this happened to me recently. The event that triggered the sudden insight was my mother's purchase of a swing set for my daughter Sarah's second birthday. Sarah is crazy for swings, and she was ecstatic to have a swingset in her own backyard. She begged to go outside, and once happily perched on a swing, demanded constant pushing. As I pushed her (and pushed her, and pushed her), I had a sudden flashback to my childhood in Concord, Massachusetts.

We lived in a rural area and the family next door had five children, the youngest of whom, Ann, was a year older than I. Ann was my best friend. Her father built this amazing swing in the woods behind their house. The swing was supported by very long ropes, suspended from a towering tree, high on a hill. When you were pushed on that swing, you really felt as if you were flying.

But we weren't old enough to have truly mastered the art of pumping, so we needed one of Annís older brothers to push us in order to reach breathtaking heights.

Ann and I would beg her brothers incessantly to push us. Day in and day out we would hunt them down in the house and, without any inhibition, plead with them to come out to the swing and push.

This is the sudden insight that I had while pushing Sarah. Looking back, what I find utterly remarkable was our total lack of hesitation about beseeching Annís brothers to do something for us that was strictly for our own enjoyment. What boldness! But could I ever imagine myself doing the same thing now? Of course not. I would feel selfish.

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