I'm alive, but I've been enjoying summertime and have tried to stay away from the computer. I'll be back soon with an update on my life!
I've talked a little about this before, but some days are so full of greatness that I can't help but to feel guilty. I have so many good things going on in my life, great friends, and a great family, and while I know I deserve it, simply because I think almost everyone deserves it, I just feel so sad for everyone who doesn't have the same things that I have. And by things, I don't mean a TV, a car, etc, but just the feeling I have of happiness, contentness and safety.
A couple weeks ago a friend posted a link on her Facebook from Flagstaff Shelter Services about how they needed food donations to feed the homeless. FSS isn't able to provide overnight services during the summer like they do during winter, but they will be providing breakfast from 7am-1pm every day. That adds up to a lot of food and money!
I've always been one to donate to a good cause, even if it was a dollar or two, but I know I can do more than that. And I am! I've adjusted the budget around so that we can have $20 a month to give away to something we want to help with. At first, I thought there was no way we would have money. I'm a college student who works short hours during the semester, and it's not like Vince is rolling in the big bucks. But after realizing that if I'm privileged enough to spend more than an hour of my time researching what kind of freaking tupperware I want (glass? plastic? bpa free? round? square?) and buying an $8 tube of lipstain at Target, I realized I have more than enough money a month. Well, not more than enough, but at least $20.
60 yoghurts, 2 giant watermelons I cut up, jelly (homemade and store-bought) and peanut butter for $25
One thing that really stuck with me was a post that the manager of FSS posted on her Facebook wall. She was giving a ride to one of the patrons of the shelter and he said that he typically doesn't like to eat a lot because he has no where to go to the bathroom, since most businesses do not let homeless people use them. Read that last sentence again. And then again. And then one more time, for good measure. This man, who only has access to a small amount of food, sometimes prefers not to eat because he has no where to use a restroom. How heartbreaking is that? It's something I never would have thought of until I read that. A lot of people claim that the homeless have done it to themselves, and that if they really wanted to do something about it, they could. Do you honestly think that someone would choose this life? A life where they opt not to eat because they had no where to take a shit?
My town has a lot of people who are homeless, especial during the summer, and I'll be the first to admit that it can be hard to deal with. I live on a street know as 'Hobo Highway' because it's the street between shelters that a lot of homeless people walk on when they go from the night shelter to the one they hangout at during the day. A lot of the times they taunt my dog if she's in the yard as they walk by, make crude comments to me, are already wasted, and aren't really a joy to be around. It's important to remind myself that not all of them are like that, and that this isn't a life of their choosing. Yes, to a certain extent it is, but really, think of yourself in that position. Imagine how hard it would be to get out of that situation on your own. You would need all the help you could get. And I of course remind myself of the saying about how everyone has a different story that has led them to their current place in life. (Um, I can't remember the quote, or where I've read it, or anything. If you know, pass it my way.)
So I'm committing to do more and I challenge you to do the same. It doesn't have to be for a homeless shelter, but can be bringing toys to the children's hospital or something. If you are in Flagstaff and want to help, Flagstaff Shelter Services can use things like bread, peanut butter, jelly, hard boiled eggs (or regular eggs that someone else will boil), clothes, yoghurt, fresh fruit, granola bars, etc. They have a fridge but no stove/oven, so they are pretty limited with what they can do!