Tuesday, February 10, 2015
I am torn. I really like good news and good stories. However, sometimes that attitude lulls me into feeling like if I just maintain a bright and cheerful attitude, all will be right with the world. Right now, that feels like a PollyAnna kind of attitude. Being right with the world has a broader scope than just being happy and positive and upbeat.
My case and point. In December we were able to give 21 quilts to children at the Mission here in Staunton. One part of me is taken aback that there are 21 children in our community who are homeless and sheltered, with at least one parent, at our local mission....at Christmas! I start to wonder how and why, then I stop. It is not about the who or why or why can't they. It is about humans beings in need. So I was grateful that when I set all of my judgements aside, I could simply gather up all of the small quilts we had in the shop....and sent them off to be shared with children who needed them.
Then came another e-mail after Christmas. Several women at the mission were waiting the arrival of new babies. I must admit the "how can that happen, don't they know any better" judgement clicked in. I am not proud of that thought. And I jerked my self righteous person back to being present, and realizing it is not about how or why. It is about human need.
Today, one of my dearest friends, Nadene Brunk sent an e-mail from Haiti this week. She founded Midwives for Haiti, a growing non-profit organization that teaches Haitian women...and men to be skilled birth attendants: prenatal, birthing and post natal care. They serve rural communities via mobile clinics and they also work with Hospital Ste. Terese. Inventory of the medicines on hand would show that they are out of and low on essential medicines needed for prenatal care and delivery.
In both these instances I was brought to the thought that I take so much for granted. Even with the health care issues in our country....there is always medicine for treatment of my illness or pain. And if one treatment does not work, there is another one to try. My granddaughter was delivered by a midwife in a well lighted, well equipped hospital. She came home with her mother to a warm home and her own crib. I have no concept of a situation that would leave her parents homeless and waiting for her birth in a shelter. I cannot imagine living in a country where drugs for their care are scarce.
At the very least, I have an inventory and personal stash of fabric that can be turned into small quilts for new babies. I am touched by the pretty quilts that have been shared for the babies due at the Mission. They are beautiful. They are the kind of quilts that I would give to a new baby in my family. No one said, "It's only for the Mission, it doesn't matter what they look like". They brought quilts in soft baby colors and bright colors. A gift from their loving quilting heart.
Judgement set aside. All things in this world are not equal or fair. Some of our human brothers and sisters suffer, and I feel like there is nothing I can do to make a difference. When I feel on the edge of helplessness, I make a quilt. And for the Midwives for Haiti, I send a donation, remembering that when I am hurting and arrive at my doctor's office, I want and expect appropriate medicines. My gifts, small as they seem to me are added into the gifts of others to make a difference. They will brighten one new mother's day as she wraps her baby in a new quilt. A midwife in rural Haiti will have enough medicine to treat a mother with needed medicine or supplies like gloves and sutures and catheters.
So when I say "all us right with the world" I am challenged to do (even) one small thing to help it to be that way. If you have a small quilt to share (no bigger than 50 x 60 inches, or smaller for a new born) bring it to the shop and we will pass it on. If you want to help stock Hospital Ste. Therese with needed medicines for maternity and obstetrics, check: Midwives for Haiti. I am learning in every experience of giving that the old adage: "every little bit helps" is absolutely true. ~~ Rachel