For millions, Boxing Day is the highlight of the festive season. They have no issue lining up for hours and hours to get the best buys in the department stores. I, on the other hand, cannot be bothered to step foot anywhere near shopping takes place.
Boxing Day originated in the Victorian era and had nothing to do with shopping. It was a day to make contributions of cash or gifts to the less fortunate. It was also a day when the servants would be allowed to minimize their work loads and spend time with their own families. Their employers would give them a gift wrapped in a box on the 26th as well. There was no bonus, no gift of a turkey and certainly no Christmas party.
Today, besides the shopping, people dedicate the day to socializing by either hosting an open house or going to visit others. Either way it’s not generally a day we focus on giving to others. And really the gift of giving is needed year round – we all know this. There are people are destitute financially worldwide. Others struggle with addictions and/or living in violent and abusive relationships. Children are hungry and suffering from malnutrition and lack of medical treatment in third world countries. For most of us, myself included, it’s a case of “but for the grace of God, go I.”
Boxing Day in our home is about entertaining and socializing. It is our wedding anniversary and we love to have people drop by and share it with us. We make a point of giving to those who need a helping hand prior to the holidays as well as throughout the year. We can’t help everyone, but we do our best to give from our heart with gratitude and thanks for what we have.
Giving to others does not have to be in the form of money or tangible goods. It’s wonderful if you can do that, but it is not the only way. Many people will be warmed by a loving spirit just spending time listening to their story and validating that they are heard, loved and wanted. There are many ways to continue giving now that Christmas Day is past; find a way that is meaningful for you. When you give from the heart, others know it is genuine.