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Please excuse me, but I need to vent….

July 10, 2013


Maybe it’s the round of last week’s steroids from yet another battle with poison oak (from a Mission Stay Saturday) or maybe it’s this week’s batch of stronger steroids from a back flare up, or maybe it’s the property tax bill due August 1st (can I hear an “Amen”!), or this tirade could be fueled by the fact that that my husband put his feet in the Fort Worth/Dallas area for work for the unforeseeable future, AND with the busyness of Hope and Friendship events and Township work I do not have a day off until Saturday Sept 7th so it will be a loooooong two months.  One big whiny sigh……. 



So I reread that rant and I feel embarrassed because it is only through the trials that we gain strength and what I rambled on about are far from the trials that I hear of every day.  That brings me to the final bit of seething that I will launch, why is it that some of us can see how cruddy our situations are and feel so much emotion and self-pity for ourselves (myself included at this very moment) but it takes so much for us to be moved to open our eyes and move our feet to ease the trials of others?  I have found that the very best therapeutic cure to my greatest frustrations, pain and ailments has been to put aside my challenges and try to find a way to help someone through theirs’.  It is better than the muscle relaxer that the doctor asked me to take. 



Perspective Lessons


Today:  A call came in to see if I had any leads for a young man who needs a roof over his head and mentoring.  A woman needs a bed.  A mom’s car isn’t working and though she poured all she had in what was to be the “fix all” repair, it was not and now she is out that money and without a car.  Found out single mom of 3 was evicted and said goodbye to my young friends as they will head off to what will continue to be a dizzying spiral of “living in a minimum wage never enough” household.  It is not their fault, but it is very much, unfortunately, their life. 



Yesterday:   A young couple with a newborn.  She took off work to have the baby, now back to her minimum wage job but six weeks behind in bills.  One month behind in rent and rounding up baby needs.  I looked at her tired eyes today and simply wanted to hug her and tell her to hang on.


A woman called after being referred by a friend from Village of Lemont.  She has an adult son at home on a ventilator.  The daily care-taking and nurse visits are time consuming.  She has not been able to keep up on the exterior of her home.  Her neighbor is not forgiving of her plot in life.  The complaint calls go out and have to be responded to.  Her lawn needed to be mowed.  She scrounged up the money and hired that out.  Her deck is safe but needs to be painted.  There are no funds for this.  She was told to call and see if Hope and Friendship could help during Mission Stay.  What a humbling, flattering and simple request.  Can I help?  I told her I could not help by myself but I sure would hope that I could round up the help for her.  Why do we judge the outside of homes, cars and people without knowing what the contents are?  Doesn’t every single one of us put our best face on when we are outside the safety of our four walls?   Maybe a neighbor, or ourselves can propel ourselves in and out of the house to do absolutely necessary tasks but once inside and the door closes who are we to judge what else that person should or should not be able to do?  If it bothers you, offer your hand to lighten their load.  Yes ma’am, we will paint your deck, somehow I will make sure we get this done to show you that others care to lighten your load. 



Last Week and more:  I’ve been working on fundraisers for Michele, a 51-year-old mother of 9.  Five of her angels are adopted, all with special needs.  Breast Cancer Survivor, Bible Study leader, Dog Breeder, world rocker- check, check, check.  May 11th, 2013 came her most recent battle: Stage IIIc Ovarian Cancer.  Prognosis bad.  Options:  chemo that would disable her immune system and keep her from being around her children or try a two-week experimental treatment.  She is on day 7 of that treatment.  While she is gone we are going to raise funds for her treatment at Front Street Cantina on Sunday July 14th from 11am-close and on Sunday July 28th from 3-7pm at Calvary Church  “Make a Way for Michele”.


Yesterday I was able to sit down with a new friend I made only because of tragedy.  A few weeks ago a home here in Lemont was hit by lightning and burnt to the ground.  That is the external story.  Inside lived a couple who felt they were finally launching into a pain free chapter of their life.  Then the storm……


We have been texting constantly for weeks.  I admire her spirit, her resilience, her faith.  However, I have sensed the crash.  Without listening to the gossip I waited to hear from her mouth that though the fire reduced every possession they had to rubble it took more than material items from them.  They lost life, their 10 year old dog.  They lost the remains of a life loved, the ashes of their 21 year old daughter who died exactly one year ago that week.  The second daughter they lost to a tragic car accident.  How much more can a heart take?  I sat with her and listened and ached.  I sit her now shuddering at the thought of the pain they lay their heads down at night feeling.  Sifting through the ashes she found a few pieces of her mother’s china, deformed but intact.   Other than that they escaped with minimal clothes on their back, their car and two dogs.  Nothing else.  How would that affect you?  Could you move forward?  Could you offer to reach out to help another?  She did. She offered to work with me on educating people on the quick turn of disaster and to take it seriously.  She offered to work with me on helping me establish care boxes for those who are in that situation and have nothing.  A care bag of soap, toothbrush, rag, shampoo, care items to help get them through the first 24 hours.  Genius!  Only gained from experience of pain.  I have yet another hero.  She stood in the glow of her world burning down and still said thanks for what was spared:  her life and her husband’s life. 



So back to my venting.  I cave.  I wrestle God for the pen to write the current chapters the way I WANT to write them not as He wants to write them.  I want to write better finances, less headaches, and easier path to walk.  How many times will He patiently wait for me to let loose my grip.  I look up at the heaven and say “why” and then I get an email that says:  “What you and your foundation did for me was more than my family or friends offered.  You stepped in when the world stepped out.  I will never be able to thank you enough.”    Then yesterday this card arrived in the mail:  “I just want to sincerely thank you for what you did for my mother.  My mother sits by my dying father and you came to her house and gave her the biggest burst of pride and happiness she has experienced in years.  Thank you for tending to their yard, their gutters, their property and making her proud again of her home.  I don’t even know who you are but I feel like you are family.  Thank you to all who lent their time, effort and compassion.”    


So if I only earn a minimal salary and give away the rest of my time I need to remember that it is not here that I am to collect my treasure.  If you don’t know how the path feels under your feet how will you understand how it feels under theirs?   I have been truly blessed with the treasures of a husband who supports my insanity whole-heartedly and children who have stood beside me as I have developed this foundation as a legacy for a man who never caved in my presence.  Never whined even as his days dwindled and the pain increased.  A man who gave every dollar he could and every effort he had to make another life better knowing he was mounting his treasure not here, but rather where he now resides. 


Breathe Terri, and know that the bills will get paid, the house will be cleaned, and the list of “to-do’s” will get done- in due time.  In His time. Right now there is work to do to help others.  I cannot do it alone.  I am only here in this corner of the world to bring the need to the forefront attention of those who can make the difference.  I am only the conduit.  You are the propellant.  I need you to step forward and answer the call if you can and with what you have to offer.  Please consider helping to lighten the load of those within your arm’s reach.  I ask for you to join me in doing that once, often or whenever you are able.  I promise the steroid grouchiness will wear off, soon.  Pretty sure my husband is safe in Fort Worth, those within my arm’s reach on the other hand……


Keep up on the needs and events present via


And on the “Hope and Friendship Ministries” Facebook Page


Or email to get on the email list. 


Wishing you much peace, much love, and much energy to see the needs and meet them. 



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One Comment
  1. I love you and once again you have humbled me.

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