On the 3rd Day of Christmas, my Loving God gave to me, Two Wonderful People
Yesterday it rained all day and into the evening. I should say there was precipitation all day. No matter what fell yesterday, it was cold. It was wet and it was cold. I couldn’t help but think about the homeless in Richmond who didn’t have a place to go to during the day. Even those who work in programs such as CARITAS and Pilgrim’s Progress need to find a place to go during the day. Home Again and Youth Advocacy Services also provide temporary housing. Many are able to take advantage of these programs, but many can’t. So where were they yesterday? Did they have shelter? Food? Warm clothes?
Many know I have been thinking about Richmond lately and living in this new spirit of RVA. The homeless, the poor, the outcasts, the forgotten, have all been on my heart and mind for quite some time and they aren’t going to leave any time soon. I won’t let them leave. I feel for them. I want to help. I love this city. I love the people. I want to help.
A part of me knows that it takes time to get to that place where you can help yourself but first, you are going to need help. When I had to move back to Richmond I didn’t have a job and I couldn’t afford a place to stay. Two dear people agreed to take me in for the summer. And they agreed for my cat to come along. Then due to a residency opportunity, they ok’d it for me to stay while I worked in the residency for an additional year.
I have been without a job for almost four months now. I know this is way past the original 3-4 months they originally agreed to, yet they have been patient and kind. They cheered me on when I was the final of two candidates for a job position and hugged me when I didn’t get it. I know they want Jelly and me out. They are ready for us to leave. I would want us out too. I’ve overstayed my welcome for sure. I’ve been here way past the expiration date. They didn’t know when they signed up for this that we would be going into 20 months. But we are still here, with a roof over our heads, warm clothes, food on the table and in the cat bowl, and heat on days that bring freezing rain and cold winds. I am blessed in humbled ways.
On this 3rd Day of Christmas, I pray that the blessings I received can be shared with others. I hope those who are concerned about where to live will find a place soon. If not, please know when I am out on my own I will help you. I will pay it forward, just as my friends have done for me. I know for me, I wouldn’t be able to interview for jobs if I didn’t have these friends helping me. Because of them, I can free my mind of worry and focus on interviews. Until I can get out and help, I will do what I can with what I have. But for those who can help now, please do. No matter what was said during the campaign and election, the truth is that the only way people are able to get back on their own is with a hand stretched out to pick them up and help.
I am not at a place where I would have been homeless, but I know things would be completely different if I didn’t have these friends who opened their home to my cat and me. I am grateful for that, in more ways than I have said or can imagine. I am humbled to have people who care for me like this. It is hard to take in. But when you have been given so much, to take in a friend, new or old, isn’t so hard to do. May the gratitude I have today help someone else tomorrow.