Spread the love

By Becky RobertsMy heart is full, and slightly confused. More to the point, it is thoughtful, trying to sort out this week and what has gone on in the life of the family we have just given a new home to.Ofelia’s mother passed away the day the team arrived in Mexico. Death is often a time that raises the question of ‘why’? In rare cases death is anticipated, even welcomed, but there is always a loss. I am not sure what happened with Ofelia’s mother, but my heart cried with her eyes on the day she told me of her new sorrow. Why? In any case or scenario, why did it have to happen like that at that time?Miguel has be taken beyond words many times in this process, and has boiled it all down to thank you, he can’t find any other words that come close. He keeps asking me how. How can there be words to express what has happened to his family this week? It isn’t just a square house with peachy-orange on the outside and Pepto Bismal pink on the inside. It is warmth, shelter, love, home, safety, growth, pride, health, progress, kindness and generosity.And I wonder how in such a short span can two extremes happen, a loss, a deep, I-will-feel-this-for-the-rest-of-my-life loss, and a gift that takes them beyond words and comprehension. And where are the answers? Both have the ‘why’ question attached to it, where are the answers?Death, and the sadness and separation attached to it, sometimes has the answer why. Sometimes that answer just isn’t enough, and sometimes it is so tragic, so random and so unjust that it goes beyond sense, and it goes beyond why.Extraordinary kindness, the type that comes with love and respect and leaves you speechless, also sometimes has an answer to the question of why. Because we are fortunate and have the responsibility to help. Because we have the resources and the time and are able to do it. Because we want to give back to someone kindness that has been shown to us. Because deep inside it just feels right.But for me this week, the kindness went beyond why.I listened to Miguel, I saw his gratitude, I understood the struggle he had in wanting to provide for his family. I watched him relax today, I watched him go from the point of being overwhelmed with kindness, to simple acceptance. He had a hard time accepting the gift of the house and it contents. He was humbled by it. Never, ever did it reach humiliation, there was so much respect and dignity offered by the team that the potential power imbalance was never there. He was braver for it. It took a bit of… gumption… to put in an application for it, he is a proud, hard working man, this is what he had to do to take care of his family.Then I looked at the group. I watched them build, laugh, talk, play, interact and give. And I truly wondered why. What is it in them, a group of young people who I have come to greatly respect, that effected this family so deeply? How is it that their kindness and respect changed permanently the lives and hearts of this family, and of myself?Let me tell you about myself. I do this all the time. I live in the extraordinary. My ‘normal’ does not sit so easily in regular life in Canada. The best part of my job is that I am constantly changing lives. Improving, impacting, encouraging, that is my normal. And I am brought to a certain level of stillness and reflection on this ‘why’.My ‘normal’ is also filled with suffering, I see people and situations all the time that is beyond understanding, and often beyond my help. There is frustration there. I know of, hear of and see things that can verge on atrocities. I definitely know the stories of people in the world who live in oppression and violation; these things are dark, powerful places.Why? It must be, if I can put an answer to it, that deep within the hearts of human kind there is goodness. And there is caring. And there is love. And this gives me hope. There is suffering, there is loss, but there is kindness and there is hope. I have seen it. I know it.

Author: LiveDifferent

Date: August 8th, 2008