Everyday Heroes…We See You
I’m choosing to focus on gratitude today. Specifically for three heroines who are fighting for people they love.
I am grateful for hero number 1.
Not only for the amazing children she is raising in her home, but for the amazing children, she is raising in her classroom. Every so often, she reaches out to our village for help on behalf of her students. Here’s an excerpt from her recent post on our private Facebook page: “Ok Mamas! I have a student whose family is going through some pretty heavy trauma involving different life-changing issues for each of their 3 children. They have a 12-year old (assault victim) an 8-year-old (with leukemia), and my little 4-year-old student (severe emotional issues). I feel the need to help lift them up this season! Today I wrote a letter to Santa and my student asked me to request a paw patrol bicycle and a scooter. But then said Santa won’t visit. If any of you have a scooter you would be willing to pass on, I would appreciate it. I’m sure most of our kids are too big to donate a bike with training wheels for a 4 year old, but if you come across one, let me know. I have referred them to several agencies and the district works with them for homebound teaching. But to meet the Christmas spirit doubt with a gift request made to Santa would put a jingle in my bell!” Because of her love for her student, she was able to provide exactly what the student requested for Christmas. Her heart knows no limits for her students.
I am grateful for hero number 2.
For the past six months, her son has been seriously ill. So much so that this fall, she took him to a special hospital in San Diego and has been staying at the Ronald McDonald House. She’s been faithfully praying and standing beside her son as his advocate. With beautiful determination, she’s working with a myriad of doctors and specialists, while ensuring her son is loved, comforted and optimistic. At 3 a.m., she’s praying over his sleeping head. During the day she is meeting with countless professionals. She ensures her family of 6 does what they can to stay united through group text messages, numerous calls and visits to San Diego. She worries about her daughter who is without her mom, for the majority of the past few months, and calls the school to ensure her care. She arranges multiple playdates for her. She worries about her husband who just started a new job and travels frequently. Her strength knows no limits for her son or her entire family.
I’m grateful for hero number 3.
She’s the most exceptionally intelligent person I know and an empathetic, accepting friend. She got me out of the house during my postpartum depression, supported me when I was laid off from my job and loves my children as her own. She also is struggling with alcoholism. I’ve realized that after 17 years of friendship, there is something we’ve never said to each other and that is “I need help.” It is because we’re too proud, embarrassed, feel unworthy, don’t want to impose? This warrior has been through one of the hardest nightmares a mother and individual can go through. Yet, she stands tall and has done – and continues to do – the determined work to keep herself healthy. That includes asking for help, which gives me permission to do the same. Taking care of herself, really looking inside of herself, and committing to hope has brought her health and beauty to everyone around her.
My favorite blogger has written about “the gift of crisis.” She writes, “Crisis shakes things up until we are forced to decide and hold onto what matters most.” To my 3 heroes, I am blessed to know you. Thank you for showing up. In the midst of crisis, you offer a critical perspective showing that when life isn’t comfortable – in fact when it is terrifying – you are true examples of love, determination, and living for what really matters.
Thank you to our local governmental and non-profit agencies who tirelessly work to provide food, shelter, and resources to our needy brothers and sisters in Austin, especially for children.
Thank you to the Ronald McDonald House for providing a home for those families who are away from theirs. For CASA volunteers and court-appointed caseworkers, thank you for ensuring justice to the greatest of your ability.