gen·er·os·i·ty

–noun, plural -ties.

1. readiness or liberality in giving.
2. freedom from meanness or smallness of mind or character.
3. a generous act: We thanked him for his many generosities.
4. largeness or fullness; amplitude

sure, the technical definition explains what the word means, but this past weekend, i learned what it felt like.

it was in the way my friends listened long enough for me to run out of silly stories and get down to what was really on my mind. it was in the way my parents drove 10+ total hours for me with a couch blocking the rear view window.  it was in the way they continued to look forward, reminding me of the good parts to come. it was in the way the hand-me-downs from my siblings filled up my new apartment. it was in the way my parents opened their wallets. it was in the way my parents, despite their achy knees and backs, lifted and scrubbed and swept and knelt and stood and cleaned and cleaned and cleaned. it was in the way they said “we’re so lucky to see you two weekends in a row” even though this weekend was all about work. it was in the way they pointed out the positive features and ignored the drippy sinks and loose screws. it was in the way the hours slid by, past their desired departure time, but they stayed until i was steady on my feet. it was in the way the smiles were stuck on their faces. it was in the way they squeezed me goodbye – so tight – despite having muscles exhausted from hours of physical labor.

sometimes, to really understand something, you can’t read about it. you must live it.

here’s to living. on my own. (ready or not.)

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18 Responses to “gen·er·os·i·ty”

  1. adriana Says:

    You’re ready! And it will be great, and you will love it!

  2. Linda G. Says:

    Aww. You have such a great family! And you are going to rock at being on your own. (Which you’re not, in spirit. Your friends and family are still right there for you whenever you need them.)

    Think of having your own place as a privacy upgrade. ;)

    • abby mumford Says:

      a privacy upgrade. i love that. it is indeed.

      and yes, my peeps are always there to support me, fortunately!

  3. kmunsey Says:

    I can’t really imagine a better, or more appropriate way, to start off your new life. Cheers to you.

  4. Patty Says:

    Awww! I’m tearing up! That was lovely.

  5. K. Marie Criddle Says:

    What a freaking beautiful post. I love your parents already. And good luck to a new chapter in life! (See what I did there? Chapter. WRITING!)

  6. Alexis Says:

    So this means that you have a PLACE for me to STAY if I ever came to visit Boston? I do have parents in DC now, and a good friend spending the summer at Harvard for comp lit classes… (also, AW parents!)

    • abby mumford Says:

      Absolutely! But you could have stayed at my other place too. Seriously. Think of the brainstorming we could do!

  7. Jeffe Kennedy Says:

    Good luck and how lovely to have people in your life like that!

  8. Grandpa Says:

    That was a generous response by you to your parents giving to you. it works both ways – generosity breeds generosity. Love, Grandpa

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