Before I get into this post, I want to make very clear that I share these things to inspire people. Not to brag, or get any recognition. I hope you read this and think to yourself … “How can I help? What can I do today to make someone smile?”
This past year I have really disconnected from the media. I have unfollowed every news page on Facebook. I rarely discuss politics anymore and do not follow what’s going on.
I did this for many reasons.
The media is ran on fear. Fear sells. Insecurity sells. Just watching commercials you’ll hear about how to get skinnier, prettier, what you need to buy, what illusion you should be portraying to the world. Even pharmaceutical companies are allowed to talk about prescriptions you may need (in the US)
You’ll hear terrible stories about women and children getting raped or killed. You’ll hear about women who kill their children then jump off bridges. Husbands killing their pregnant wives and other horror stories.
I don’t want to hear about it. I don’t want that negativity and fear consuming my life. Tragedy, abuse, death etc do nothing for me but make me sad.
I choose to believe there is more good in the world than what we see.
We may have no control of what goes on in the world but we have control of ourselves. We can be the example. It is so important to raise the future of our world to do the right things.
When I was a little girl, I vaguely remember helping my Mom pack lunches for our local homeless shelter. We would make sandwiches and pack sacks full of food. My mom was a single mom of three girls then.
Years later, I remember my parents adopting families for Christmas.
One of my favorite memories was when I was about 12. My sister and I knocked on someone’s door with bags full of Christmas presents. The family we adopted were sitting on the couch listening to Christmas music.
We gave them their gifts and they were so blown away. The dad followed us out and asked who we were and who the presents were from… to which we replied .. “Santa”.
I remember him choking up. In that moment, I remember feeling grateful too. I was blessed that my parents had given me this opportunity to do this for them.
I want to teach my children about acts of service and how they can serve others. This past year I have made it a mission to give my kids opportunities to do this.
If you know me in real life you probably have heard about my neighbor. She is very fortunate to be my neighbor. Actually, in all honesty, I am probably more fortunate than her. She has been a blessing to my life.
She is elderly and her husband has died. She has a wonderful family who love her dearly. I spend many evenings sitting with her on her porch or mine. We look after each other.
The day after my husband left, she was there. She stood in my door and held me while I cried
We sit and enjoy each others company. I tell her about my life and she tells me about her life traveling, living in the country and raising her kids. We’ve sat in her dining room and have gone over photos of her ancestors. She is so interesting and fun. We are planning a time to make soap together. I will for sure make a blog post documenting that day.
My kids love her. When we make bread, she always gets a loaf. When we have cake, she always gets a piece. When it’s summer and Sonic has half priced shakes- she’s getting a shake !
We always think of her and include her. I know it means the world to her. A few weeks ago, I found flowers on sale at the store and made two beautiful bouquets for us. That same evening I decided it would be fun if we made goodies for all of the kids teachers. They had so much fun surprising them and passing them out.
We have also started a new tradition of making trick or treat bags for our local women’s shelter. We have done it the last two years on Halloween.
The world can be a scary place at times. I challenge you to not entertain this. Create your own reality. Start at home. You can be the good. It could be an easy gesture that doesn’t cost you a penny. Make friends with your neighbors. Look after the elderly person on your street. Include them. Buy coffee for someone behind you. Do something kind for your friends! Just a letter or a text letting them know you appreciate them. Get involved and get others involved in group efforts of helping others.
Do it anonymously if it makes you feel uncomfortable. I believe the giver receives more than the person receiving.