Friday, May 1, 2009
Helpless or Helpful~The Choice is Yours.
In the past few days we've been overwhelmed with health crisis that have come to our our family. My treasured Aunt Christine received word that the cancer they'd found in her colon was also in other places. This left her and the entire family shaken and dazed from the implications of the entire thing. Possibilities we hadn't ever considered were forced before us and challenges never thought of now have to be considered.
Then I heard the news that my nephew and niece's little brother has been admitted into the hospital for unknown causes. He's very sick and my former sister-in-law is worried as is their entire family. My heart breaks for the sweet little two year old who is now in a children's hospital. I also worry about my niece and nephew so far away. How scary when your little baby brother you love so much is so desperately ill.
All of this is happening back in my home province, hundreds of kilometres away. It makes for certain feeling of helplessness and isolation. Never have I been more grateful for the technology of the Internet to keep in touch with family and get information and updates more quickly.
And while I'm wandering about, doing the menial day by day tasks, hoping somehow to forget what's happening, and basking in the feeling of helplessness I was sent a message by a local friend. She was asking for sponsors for her participation in the Canadian Cancer Society's Relay Walk for Life being held on June 12, 2009. She is walking in support of her friend whose little three year old girl was recently diagnosed with bone cancer. How unfair, children should not have these kinds of challenges. So I pledged to donate and sponsor her because, I thought, if I can't be there to help my family, then I will help whoever I can.
Then suddenly I thought maybe I could expand on that. So I immediately put my google skills to work and connected with the website for the Relay for Life. We need a team of 10 to participate. I contacted my aunt who lives here in Ontario, one who I am sure feels this distance from her sister intensely right at the moment, and asked if she was interested. In moments I had an affirmative. I sent face book messages to every cousin in Ontario and asked for them to join me. My brother called me and I asked him. He said "sign me up" and we have 7 confirmed and a few more who I think will join us in this event. I've started our team and on June 12 our family here, so far away from our home, will be walking together to raise awareness and money.
Our team is called Christine's Angels. We are walking for my father who is gone, my Aunt Christine who has just begun this journey and her sister, my Aunt Irene, who has been on the journey and defeated cancer. We will be walking for every family, every person who has been touched in some way by this disease. This event will raise awareness and funding for cancer research but for us, as a family, it's a way to get together, be together and strengthen the hope we all carry that this disease will be eradicated in our beloved family member.
I write this to let you know you are never helpless. There is always someone who needs a hand. If you can't help the person you want to help do the next best thing and help someone else. If nothing else, share a hug.
The fringe benefit is that you feel so much better suddenly. Feeling helpful is such a powerful feeling next to feeling helpless. I don't tell you this because I want accolades or pats on the back, I tell you this to pass on the message that if you are feeling helpless, hopeless or depressed, you too can gain the positive energy that comes in giving and serving humankind. I tell you this for you. So that you too may go in service to others, that they may be helped and you too can feel the lightness of your footprints on a path walked for the good of others.
Go lightly my friend
on the path of your life
help up your neighbour
lessen your strife
hand out to the stranger
open heart to your friend
helping your brother
pays off in the end
The power of giving
the energy of love
is as strong as an eagle
and as light as a dove