Radical Generosity - At The Dentist!
Posted by Parag Shah on Nov 28, 2018
Here's beautiful story from an application we received for our upcoming (first-ever!) Educators Laddership Circle:
To me, radical generosity means to give freely and wholly without expecting anything in return. I have trained as a trained Dentist and recently received a message from a patient whom I had treated last year in Melbourne. The patient had at the time newly arrived in Melbourne and was a single mum, struggling to find work. She had been suffering with pain from a tooth but had not been able to afford the cost of the necessary dental work. When she arrived at my practice and told me her story, I told her that I would do the work for her and take only the cost to cover the materials as I was not the owner of the practice and these materials were being paid for by them. I told her that I would be happy to do the work for her with no charge other than this which came to about $50. This was a lot lower than she had been quoted elsewhere and was low enough for her to be able to manage with her other commitments in mind.
The message I received just last week was of great news. This same patient wanted to tell me that she had found a good job and that her and her children were doing well. The reason for her message was to ask if I was still at the same practice as she wanted to send me $200 (the difference between what I had charged her and the cost she had been quoted elsewhere) so that I would be able to do the same act for someone else in the future should they be in need.
I was so very touched by her message of gratitude and even more by the fact that she had wanted to pay it forward. To me, this is not radical generosity but felt like the best that I could do for someone in need.
I feel as though the feeling and relationships that this kind of exchange fosters is far deeper and lasting than anything monetary exchange could ever do.