Do A Good Deed Anonymously.

Do a good dead. Anonymously.

Why do we do things for others?

When they ask? When some rich well known person gets up on television and asks? When you see the bin for tins for the poor?

When I was in grade 3 I saw the Jerry Lewis Telethon and while the parents were still in bed I was off going door to door asking for donations and when they finally roused from their sleep, we drove down and dumped it into the big glass bowl.

There was no one reading out a pledge, patting me on the back or admiring my hutzpah for going out and doing that (in fact the step dad was grumpy, tired and grumbled all the way down to drop the money off).

It was the feeling of doing something, small, for someone else.

Cities have grown bigger, people are physically closer together, so they seek any distance and privacy they can get from others and…

…we all dwell in a cramped hothouse of desperate isolation.

This week I have been struggling with a back issue that is having a very pronounced affect on everything, from numbness in my hands/arms to knees giving out for no obvious reason, along with never ending pain in the lower back.

The visit to the walk-in clinic I will go through later.

We had some nasty weather, wrecked havoc on trees, increased the amount of water flowing in rivers and made the birds walk instead of fly for a couple days.

Next door, the lady had done her grass just before the storm hit, and she has a lovely big tree in her yard, so after the storm passed her yard was full of downed branches, twigs and sticks.

After a few days Precious and I decided to clean up her yard.

We both picked up branches, sticks and twigs, piling them off to the side for easy removal however she wished to do it.

Precious enjoyed it, she has always loved sticks.

I do not really know the neighbor, other than she works long hours, and part of me did imagine someone might mind another person picking up downed branches in their yard.

We completed our task, finished our walk and continued on with our week.

Last night I wrote down the new job listings for another neighbor, who I know is looking for a job but does not have a computer in house and has to go to the job center.

Tucked the note into his front door, unsigned.

Again, he might mind receiving notes with possible job leads, or he might appreciate the heads up days before he could go check at the office in person.

Non judgmental, as I do not care who works where, doing what, as long as no one gets hurt and your happy.

I know he is a decent fellow who pats my dog on occasion and ignores her flurry of barking demands for attention at others, which I heartily approve of, she will learn that she won’t get attention that way.

Nothing big, no one is going to say thank you but perhaps it made someone’s day a little easier.

People lost the desire to be kind to each other somewhere along the way the sentence “what do I get out of it?” became more important than being a good person or even an outlying part of the community.

Religion does not enter into it.

Besides, Precious and I needed the exercise (and she has not played with sticks in years).

Breaking common conception. Shoot the stereotype.

When looking out, we can not see through the eyes of other people or know what demons they have slain, how good or bad the journey has been for them.

Do I need to know their past to accept that they can understand intrinsically what I or another is going through?

No, it helps make us less embarrassed, ashamed or scared to share things if we know that those who are listening have some experience/knowledge with our situation and are not looking down on us…for whatever reason.

One of the things that isolates us from help, or possible friendship, is shame, fear, embarrassment and stigma.

I was talking to one of my counselors this week and something she had not realized, even though she did say that when she revealed she had been conned out of a small amount of money to co-workers in a meeting, some people looked at her differently, as if she was kinda stupid.  However, when I pointed out that in today’s world 9 times out of 10, people admire the person that stole the money or whatever…they kinda smile and say clever devil (or something along those lines) while looking at you as if it was your fault.

It’s something that people do as for some reason they admire the not Robin Hood con artists and cheats.

After all, we all like to think and say that we are smart and not likely to get “taken in” by anyone.

How much of looking down at the victim is from that little desire to be superior to someone else?  How much is admiration for a liar, cheat and confidence artist?

How about we change the stereotype a little, Robin Hood these people are not.

The devastation they cause is more than anything you have seen portrayed on Television.

You likely won’t hear it because the victims are looked down on, and the criminal is admired.

Somehow, that view needs to change…and the crime needs to be looked on as what it is.

Destroying people’s lives.

But then that is just my viewpoint.

About time we support the victim and berate the crook, instead of admire their clever skills.

 

 

 

Commonground

Why is it that everyone discusses the weather?

Ok, a few of us consider that a subject to avoid if possible because it is too common and cliche, however the reason everyone can discuss the weather is, it is common ground.

Alright, it is true that not everyone can commiserate about a Canadian Prairie Winter, but as an icebreaker how sunny, rainy, windy, gorgeous or hideous it is outside is an icebreaker (conversationally speaking).

It is beautiful outside, if you enjoy toasting in sun and sweating through humidity.

The weather is not the only common ground we have, it can’t be, but sometimes the way people act you would think that it is.

I have a lot of empathy, perhaps more than I should have but I am sure that I am not the only one to look out a window and think that people spend too much time seeing the differences, widening the gap between them and others without realizing that we have more common ground than just the weather.

Can a millionaire commiserate with me over not having money, food, clothes? Well with a few exceptions I am certain there must be a few that started out with little or nothing so ya, I think some can.

It is true, we spend so much time trying to excel at individuality that we forget those things that keeps everyone connected.

Lets face it, someone from Florida is not going to understand a Manitoba winter, heck some places do not even include block heaters as standard equipment on their vehicles as they are here.

So what other things keep us connected?

Hunger?

Romance?

Food?

Pets?

Hmmm depends on the person, we do not all share the same enthusiasms, loves or tolerances of other beings or things.

I am no better than anyone else.

I can not read minds.

So conversation and interaction are the venues which allow us to discover that common ground.

Maybe.

Rinse and watch someone else repeat.

You ever get into a mess, a big one, and whether someone else got you there (as in my case) or circumstances made a shambles of things, even maybe you just charged forth into the valley of 300 foibles without thinking it through and…

…well isn’t this one FINE mess?

I know how I got into my mess, well most of it, and I know now that there were other ways of handling my circumstances but at the time, when your IN the quagmire most of us are not stepping back and thinking logically.

My predicament aside, as I will write about that in future should I ever get the courage, it seems that once people know you have been through something, they seem to think you are an expert on that particular circumstance.

I am here to say, that is not always the case.

After all I was shot at once and I would be just as clueless and stuck to the ground if it happened today as I was then.

A former ex tried to strangle me, and I have not taken self defense courses so, I would be just as hapless should that ever be repeated (not if I can help it).

Con folk stole everything I had and got me into a foreign country, okay, on this one I am a little more knowledgeable.

So someone else is in a foreign country, brought there by someone they trusted and were in a relationship with, and they too have no money, freedom and well they are kinda screwed…slight adjustment in circumstances and physical situation.

When you think your faux pas or conundrum is a singular event, not experienced by anyone else, well I realize now that it is a bit big headed.  There are still things that happen to people that are indeed singular and original but that is in itself exceptional and rare.

Other people at some point in time have gone through something akin to what you are or did, slight nuances of difference taken into consideration, and well the outcomes are probably as varied as each of us are as individual human beings.

So when someone asked me for advice for this person who is stuck in a foreign country, no money, no family with money,surrounded by people who do not care or actively got you there and dislike you, with pets that they can’t bear to leave…

…I understand from experience, what they are going through.

54 days ago the people who put me in a similar situation after taking everything I had, including my identity, threatened to slit my throat, and the world was in turmoil.

53 days ago I boarded a plane and arrived back in my own country an emotional, psychological, financial and physical mess.

They managed to take everything I had and I ended up with nothing.

Yesterday a friend contacted me because she was aware of what I went through, and now someone else is going through something similar, in my country.

Well now there is a conundrum.

I still have not worked through everything but my counselor is amazing and very good at seeing things that I did or do not, though I do not need anyone to tell me how lucky I am now, I made it out with my dog.

There is still a woman, in Canada, who is broke, has diabetes, no family to pay for her return to America, no health care, and the person that brought her to Canada (unsure if it was a sponsor or what) is now saying they are broke and can’t even pay for her return to the states with her pets.

Alas I am still broke myself and looking for a place to live, and the basic necessities so I am not much help in financial ways.

I have made suggestions but the person living through any particular hell has to actually take the steps to DO or SEEK things to help them out of the circumstance they are in.

When one is on the edge of a cliff, looking into avast abyss of darkness without a clue of what is below when they step off, many things keep them glued to the mountainside unable to move and fear is rather high on that list, not to relegate shame, embarrassment, vulnerability or helplessness to non existence because they all contribute in their own nefarious major ways, but fear is the bow on the box that needs to be undone first.

Rose coloured glasses.

It is easy for people to look around them and see all the negatives, especially if they have never experienced anything else.

I have never looked negatively on my country, it has always been the best and most beautiful but even I saw some things as being a little less glorious, sophisticated and exotic, until I ended up in another country for 6 years.

I am glad that I have always felt proud of my country, and the view I have to how fortunate, intelligent, kind and rich in culture we are, which has only been bolstered from my experiences abroad.

I hear people listing all of our negatives, and am amused as other countries who seem fairer, actually have far worse problems than we do, including but not limited to the expectation of government support for those not working, open prejudice, ceilings to educational growth and hidden class distinctions.

Of course people who are spouting the negatives are not in the mood to hear that things really are not as bad as they could be, or are in other countries that seem to wonderful when you are not actually in them.

The art of appreciation is not taught, sought or understood, but it should be.

Appreciate what you have, where you are and those you love, for it is amazingly simple to lose it all and then all you have resting upon your plate is regret and sorrow.

My world for a roll of TP. Ok not mine…

…it is someone ELSE stuck in the loo yelling: “Where did all the TP go?”

Well buggered if I know, last I knew there were 8 rolls in there.

Maybe there is a critter that eats TP ?

No, we know who has it, in their bedroom.

It is stashed in there under the tinned food, bags of chips and chocolate bars.

No they were not this bad before but hey, can’t let the odd one out get anything more than…anything.

The fridge is like a map of proprietary territory, with 1 small shelf being a DMZ.

Some people make me wonder.

 

 

the TP police…ride again.

You know the type of people that will count out toilet paper squares to give you because they are that anal and concerned with money? The ex’s mother is that person – this morning she put a new roll of toilet paper in the upstairs bathroom. It’s gone. So I am in my room and she was in the doorway ranting about the toilet paper – Thomas showered and he apparently LOVES to go through toilet paper (apparently).

Until the last 6 months I would never imagine I would be so happy that I walk the extra flight of stairs to use the OTHER bathroom.

Remember folks “BE SQUARE AWARE. Conserve your Toilet Paper, save the world” (or a few pennies whichever way inclined you are).