Friday, November 25, 2011

How do you make a difference?

Silhouette from Dover clip-art
We all want to have others be aware of us in positive ways.  Positive is a nebulous word.  Pick a meaning for you that makes your spirit soar.

For me it's important to make a difference.

In the grandest of my dreams, the difference I make is cosmic.  Felt worldwide, felt universally.

In the reality of my world, the difference I make is sometimes not observed by anyone but me.

We look for the "big" things, often forgetting it's the little things that build the big things.

When I look back over some of the posts I have written from the streets, I sometimes wonder if anyone of us has an effect at all.

Personally, I recommend any one of these 6:

Being homeless, an opportunity?

What does your awareness mean?

So *who* is it that is homeless?

The moment

Carrying Bus Tokens -- A small act of well being

Tale:  Take One

If I look at the overall picture, even in the locations I was at when I was homeless this time last year, the *big* picture doesn't seem to be affected very much.

There's still an overwhelming amount of people facing homelessness today.  The same shelters are still packed to overflowing.  There's no winter shelter for those on the streets where I took shelter last year during this health-claiming weather we are starting to experience.  People are dying on the streets, physically, emotionally, mentally and in spirit.

However, I talked to one mother who is filled with hope because she is about to finish off the last 2 months of her school and nearly has transitional housing for herself and her two children currently in an emergency shelter.

I talked with a man last night who got transitional housing, lost his job six months ago and is hopeful he will be accepted at an emergency shelter because he is about to be back on the streets again.  He was a delight to share company with.

I helped a young child -- probably about 4 years old, fix her Hand-art of a Thanksgiving Turkey, because I lucked into having a small container of glue on me (yes, artists run around with odd things on their persons sometimes) and was able to illustrate to her how to fix the google eyes that had fallen off her treasured piece of artwork.

I have met two phenomenally prolific gentlemen who write with heart, spirit, and verve in a creative writing class provided by a volunteer at a shelter.  Each of these men are artists.  And they have made a ripple in my life as we, three, encourage each other with those precious words of awareness and "wow! what a fantastic phrase" exclamations.

Small things?  Yes. perhaps, depending on your viewpoint.  Cosmic?  Felt worldwide?  Universal?  That's an unknown.  You cannot tell which one of any of these people who share the streets with me is a cog in the avalanche of small things that build large things.

I am on the last stretch of writing no less than 50,000 words this month.

Due to health circumstances, writing is one of the few ways I can currently continue as a Homeless Advocate.

One of the things that has come out of this unexpected set of circumstances is having a goal for NaNoWriMo morph into an exciting way of being.  I cannot join my comrades out on the street at this moment in time as they bring awareness to the social ill that is homelessness.  Hopefully that will change.

One of the things I can do is performance art and that concept has grown from a seedling into a fiercely protected sapling that will ultimately grow into a story tree -- all within the short span of 50,000 words in one month.  It will take longer to grow the tree ... yet consider ... sprouting a seedling?  AWESOME!

It is not just homelessness that I strive to bring awareness to.

It is our human-ness.  Our being.  Our existence.  Our feeling in our lives.

So many of us have been taught to deny ourselves.  To deny our feelings.  To deny our being.

It can be discomforting to even contemplate change.  Yet, I encourage you, if you find yourself in circumstances that are not what you would have hoped for -- to effect change.

The smallest amount of change.  The smallest amount of awareness can have life transforming effect.

You affect the big picture.

Never believe it's not so.

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