The Giving Season

That title isn't hyperbole, you really did give this season. And give and give and give. 

If you could see my overflowing gratitude, the way my heart expanded, the joy I felt from your generosity, it would possibly overwhelm you. The good news is, I can tell you about that. How amazing I've seen the human spirit be, how gracious and lionhearted and unhesitating you were when I asked for your help. You gave heroically. (Nor is this hyperbole)

What you can't see was the hardened little girl who was so bitter at losing her mother to drugs, who was forced into a shelter and was so unhappy at her core because of that. You also missed the way her face lit up when I gave her the shoes she asked for, the ones you bought for her. The ones that glowed in the dark. You missed the moment she put them on and the way for a small moment that anger melted away and underneath the happy little girl she was meant to be came out. I'm sorry I couldn't capture that for you, it was divine. 

You also couldn't see the grateful faces at the outreach center who got new, warm blankets that you provided. How they got clean, new socks and toiletries to bring them closer to feeling human again. How those small things bring happiness. I wish I could bottle that up and give it to you in return for the gift you gave them. 

You missed the boys playing with new basketballs and girls coloring in beautiful new coloring books with brand new crayons and markers. How dedicated they were to painting their sun catchers and proclaiming they were going to hang it on the wall of their cubicals. How they painted and mixed colors and used their vivid childish imaginations to bring to life dogs and houses and Christmas trees. How they furrowed their brows as though that face would keep the color between the lines. They were children allowed to act like children without the environment reminding them that this wasn't the normal they should have. Your art supplies carried them away from the shelter if only for a couple of hours. I wish the picture that I've painted could show you the meaning you brought to them. 

With all your donations you restored some dignity, you've contributed to the betterment of people you don't even know, nor will ever meet, you've made lives richer. That's so commendable that I am strangely at a loss for words.

I argue against the idea that you can't help the poor, the unemployed, the homeless. That what you do isn't enough. What you did was enough, it was phenomenal. Thank you. 

(I'll also use this as a platform to extoll the virtues of volunteering: if you ever need a way to fill your heart and soul, give back. Give your time, give your money, give something of yourself. The appreciation you get back will expand your spirit and your consciousness and it will be euphoric. I promise.)

Again, I thank you from the bottom of my eternally grateful heart. I am in awe of you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. 

Nikki Irish