Giving from the heart. It means so much more than something tangible. The only problem is that giving from your heart so often means giving a piece of your heart and with that comes responsibility for the recipient, whether they know it or not. Whether they like it or not. That piece, that precious piece of your very being, is fragile and needs care. It needs to be nurtured, like a seedling germinating; just the right amount of food, water, and love. So easily squashed whilst it's still small and precious.
They cannot give it back to you. You can take it back if you choose. You can choose to leave it where it was and hope that it's cared for. That the recipient has recognised its value, its wonder and its mystery and chooses to cherish such a gift from you.
That's why you have to give carefully. Choose wisely. And accept that the recipient is human.
(This piece was written for the Writing Workshop on Sleep is for the Weak. The prompt was Giving, to help launch a new campaign by anti-poverty charity ActionAid.)