Sunday, December 18, 2005

Good Deeds

I am not particularly compassionate and neither is my husband. We understand that life is rough, and crappy things happen, and that many times we cannot fix the situation. Usually the compassion we show is directed towards dogs. We have adopted dogs rather than buy a puppy from a breeder. We rescued a dog from the side of the road and have kept her for five years now. We donate to various causes, but rarely do we roll up our sleeves for the charity itself. Part of this is due to Phill's profession as physician. You see so many social situations that you can't fix and that even if you did hand the person a wad of money it would not help past a day. We've run into that before, gotten burned, and we just have stayed out of the messes.

Yet, the other day Phill was telling me about a father who travels an hour a day to be with his infant son. The father is there for rounds; he has learned how to feed his child (there are medical issues to deal with, so it is more complicated than just giving the kid a bottle); and he is constantly involved. What makes this so amazing and what has touched Phill about the situation is something only he can explain, but the fact that Phill is so touched reached me. The family is currently homeless because the father was unable to work while his wife was bedridden for the last part of her pregnancy. He stayed home to take care of their first child. He's looking for work, and will probably be able to get a job once his second baby is out of the hospital. Where the family is going to live in the meantime I don't know.

Phill wants to help this family because this baby has such potential and said so to me. What we would really like to do is ensure housing, but we can't do that. Phill suggested money so the family could get formula and diapers. I countered with a Wal-Mart gift card. We decided the card was a better hand up than just plain money. While we were at the super packed place on Saturday (What were we thinking?), I remembered that I have many 0-3 month boy clothes that were never worn. I mean never. So, I also suggested that we package these up to give to the family.

Will these things help? I don't know. But, this is what the season of giving is about. I at least know that this infant will have warm clothes, blankets, and hats. I can only hope that the social workers do their jobs to help find these people a home.

In keeping with my current poetry theme, a short one by Emily Dickinson.

Not in Vain

If I can stop one heart from breaking,
I shall not live in vain:
If I can ease one life the aching,
Or cool one pain,
Or help one fainting robin
Unto his nest again,
I shall not live in vain.

No comments: