I pass through this one busy intersection every day on my 5 minute drive to M's preschool, and 9 times out of 10 there is someone there asking for money - whether it be a man with a bucket that says "help the children" (what children buddy?) or a homeless person with a sign and a forlorn look on their face - with brand new sneakers on. Now I am always suspect of these people. Sure some of them are really down and out and actually homeless, and some might be collecting for a good cause, but how do I know where this money is actually going? I will happily write a check or donate money to cancer research, or helping sick kids, or any other charity or foundation, when I know that the money is going towards something legitimate. I will not give money to the guy with a bucket that has hand written on it "help the children." I do not believe that money will be helping out any children!!
Today on my drive to school I was passing through the intersection when I saw a white male, no older than 18 with a shirt on which he had written "Homeless. Need Food or Money" in big black letters. He was angrily talking with a man in pick-up truck who was stopped in the lefthand turn lane. Their conversation was heated - I could tell this because I had been stopped next to the truck for a few seconds before the light turned green. I noticed on the other side of the intersection was a young white girl holding a sign - and I prepared my "move" for when I would be passing back through in a couple minutes. Was I going to do the "I'm on the phone" move? Or the "I am busy with my kids move" or the "I'm sorry for your troubles, but I don't have anything to give you" move, while I sit there in my fancy car with my diamond ring flashing in your direction. This all sounds so shallow to me as I write it, but it is so true - I never give anyone money when I am in the car, especially with kids in the back.
So as I pull towards the intersection, I get in the left hand turn lane, and I am stopped right next to this girl with her sign - "Homeless" it says in big letters, and then below in smaller print "Pregnant, and sleeping on the street."I looked at the girl, and she too looked no older than 18. She didn't look like she had been homeless for long, but she did look a little worn out. What was her story? Was she really pregnant? She didn't look pregnant...was she just using that as a means to get more sympathy? What if she is pregnant and really sleeping on the street? I felt horribly for her and for the first time was about to actually give her money, but then a man crossing the street started a conversation with her, and thankfully gave her a few dollars, and then the light turned green and I was off.
Was this girl telling the truth? Did something horrible happen to her that forced her to live on the streets, with (I am assuming) this other teenager who also looked pretty hard up? Did her mother kick her out when she found out she was pregnant? Was she raped? Was that her baby daddy across the street? Or was this all a scam? What is going to happen to the baby?? Were these two drug addicted con artists taking advantage of people's holiday spirit? Why were they out in the suburbs, in a well to do neighborhood, at this intersection? Was this planned out? I guess I will never know...but one thing is for certain, it made me think about how freaking lucky I am in life right now.
My biggest concern right now is where to go to shop for Christmas presents while my babysitter watches the kids! What kind of life is that? A God damned lucky one that is for sure.
I sit here in my big house, at my Mac computer, typing with a diamond ring on my finger, while my beautiful newborn baby rocks in her swing next to me, and my amazing three year old naps snuggly in her warm bed upstairs. My husband works his ass off every day, so that his ladies want for nothing. I am one of the luckiest people on earth. I worry about what to make my family for dinner each night. I stress over what to dress my daughters in each day. I have the worries of a very fortunate person, and I know this.
As you visit with your family this week, and sit down for Thanksgiving dinner, look around you at your loved ones, and be thankful for having them in your lives, a roof over your head, and love in your heart.
I am thankful for all I have in my life, and don't take it for granted for one second. My life is seriously too good to be true, and for that I am grateful.
And I thank all our readers for coming back each day to hear what us crazy Mamas have to say!!