For better or for worse, relationships reveal the core of the human condition.
In most of my 35 years of living I have always been a giver. I can name plenty of times where I gave something, whether it was a gift or my advice or just a listening ear. But I always gave something. I don’t have much I’m low income and I have 5 children I’m supporting on my own but I knew in my soul that it was better to give then to receive and I try my best to give the best gifts I can. Which is probably why I have a hard time receiving gifts or even acts of service. I don’t know what that looks like for myself. Although when people have given me gifts I never rejected it. I was very grateful.
My family has always been poor. I was raised on government benefits, and during adulthood I have only succeeded in securing financial independence for short periods of time. ‘Just getting by’ works fine until something goes wrong. Until something breaks. Like your back hurts, or your vacuum cleaner dies, or a pandemic starts.
When you marry young and have children young, you can expect to have some pretty awful days and some pretty nasty encounters with people from all backgrounds. My husband and I were quickly learning this, being married at nineteen and having our first son at twenty.
I find that in these most trying times; where charitable acts are most often made out of hubris and ego. The kindness of men video recorded and regurgitated en masse as viral sensations. Where humanity, Americans especially have socially evolved into a kind of cold indifference to the wanton suffering around them. Where we give sentiment but far too rarely action as a way to sate the guilt of the human condition.
She never imagined airports this way. Airports always seemed stressful, panicky, full of rush places, but never the place where she found herself exploding in millions of pieces.
Good Deeds I work at a place, let’s call it “Better Buy”, that allows me to work one on one with people to either help discover or further their needs for comfort, leisure, entertainment, work, and creativity. The opportunity almost always presents itself for others to prove that good deeds don’t have to be such an oddity and rarity- yet so little do I get the chance to say that I’ve witnessed it happen. Which is why I think telling this story might be something constructive, if not just enjoyable to the eyes and heart.
It is raining again, and the rain makes me melancholy. I look out my window, and I watch the fat icy drops cascade recklessly from the pale gray October sky. It always rains in October here, wetting the brightly colored leaves that have freshly fallen, covering them with a faint sheen that causes them to glisten as they build in numbers, piling higher as the days grow darker and the trees reluctantly shed in anticipation of winter.
The two simple words “face” and “mask” bring many things to mind: from the ole’ bank robber and cowboy tropes to skincare routines and beyond. While the face mask as we know it now is not by any means a new concept or a new fashion accessory, it reached an unprecedented amount of popularity in every sector of life due in no small part to the rampant initial spread of Covid-19.
Last March, our little 89 home over-55 community was thriving. We had just finished up a very successful play, we were working on a Murder Mystery Theater, and had just started up a writing club. This in addition to the almost daily card games and other regular activities enjoyed by over half our residents.
As I’m writing this it’s a little after 9 a.m. on a Monday and the sun is shining. The sky is blue and there are clouds. White fluffy clouds. It’s a great day.
“What the heck!” I said as I looked at the screen of the ATM, forty dollars and fifty cents were all that was left in my bank account. My small work pay-cheque all disappeared in an instant, POOF! Just like that. Now I have enough money to feed me for a day or so, I think! Great now what do I do! I huffed and rolled my eyes. I groaned and forcefully pulled my card from the mouth of the machine.
The fall season has always been one of mixed experiences for me. In my second year of university I came to realize that my residence at the time wasn’t a safe space for me, and being young, I wasn’t really sure where to go or what to do. I ended up spending many nights on campus or on benches in local parks. While I technically had a home at the time, I lived for a while without its shelter or safety.