i think on the family who lives under the stairs below my flat…full of kindness and compassion, in the last three weeks of my sickness they were up and down the stairs checking on me, bringing me fish curry and rice to supplement my diet, calling to see how my fevers were…

they are a family of rickshaw pullers, generations have lived in the space below those stairs, with little in terms of material goods, they sleep on mats in the corridor right in front of the double door gates. they are hard workers and an extended family to us… their generosity is staggering…and every time they warmly encourage me to take an extra moment to have tea with them, sit and share a plate of lunch, i cringe and am distracted by the fact that i’m consuming food they’ve worked hard to prepare and eat, it never crosses my mind to suffer the kindness and generosity they offer. each time and with each cringe and refusal of their gift i rob them of a chance to serve and love…i find this posture in me so often…in my community, with our ladies at sari bari. guilt is my default, not gratitude or gracious receiving…i am more consumed by how i will repay than suffering the kindness…

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