Over the past few days, I've been on a mission of sorts to help out a friend who found out that she is gaining custody of 3 little boys. She lives about 3 hours from here, but since we were planning on going down there this weekend anyway, I figured it wouldn't be a big deal to gather some things to take to her.
Granted, I did not expect to end up with as much as we did.
I didn't expect to have so much stuff that we would have to tie some of it onto the roof of the van to get it there. I am so thankful that it worked out that way though.
To me, this is not a big deal. She needed help, and I was able to find some things for her and take them to her. I didn't do it for public accolades and admiration - I did it because it was the right thing to do.
Along the way, I actually had people question my motives. Some people chose to believe that the whole thing was a farce - that I was collecting the things in order to turn around and sell them for my own profit.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, I had people tell me that I was doing such a wonderful thing, and that it was just so amazing. Those are actually the comments that really got me to thinking about some things.
Why is it so amazing that I would collect some things for a friend in need? Isn't that what we, as civilized human beings, are supposed to do? Aren't we supposed to help people when they need it?
What I did was not amazing - I did what needed to be done. I am so thankful that I was able to do what I did to make this transition easier for these babies and for my friend and her husband. Collecting stuff to take to her was a no-brainer - but to many people it was like I moved mountains.
Don't get me wrong - I'm so incredibly grateful for everyone who was able to donate items to her. And I totally understand that many people were unable to for so many reasons. I know that times are tough right now. Financially, I'm not able to do much to help her. But, we had this trip to see her planned and budgeted already, so tossing in a few extra bags of goodies wasn't that big of a deal. And it was important for my kids to see what we were doing - it is important for them to understand that while we may not have much, we can still help someone else.
Doing the right thing for someone shouldn't be amazing. It should be normal. Doing the right thing should be a way of life for everyone - not a rare occasion for a few people.
Think about it. The next time you hear about someone who needs help with something - really think about it. Figure out if there is a way that you can help. Sometimes, even if you think that you can't do anything, you might be able to find someone who can.