Sometimes things are hard for me.
Sometimes people don’t understand depression. Or they misinterpret it. Or they try to help, and they mean well, but unless they’ve been there…it’s just hard to relate to.
There’s no off and on switch. It just comes when it wants and leaves after you do the hard work in therapy and keep talking. Depression is ugly and it takes your breath away. It takes YOU away. You’re gone because depression has moved in and unpacked his boxes without permission. And you feel helpless, alone, and often, judged.
And just when things seem like they can’t be any worse, something bad happens. Something really, really awful.
And then I can’t move. I can’t breathe. But I’m not the one who’s living it in Moore or Oklahoma City. Still, I’m glued to The Weather Channel watching and crying and feeling worse. Or doing a bajillion things like a maniac to keep busy so I don’t have to think about all the things. Especially the children. Oh G-d, the children. Not my children, the children in Oklahoma.
Just when I feel so lost and don’t know what to do or where to begin to help…like I can’t possibly make a difference as one person… I get an email from my friend Teal Williams. Here’s what it says:
So many of you were incredibly generous when 2 years ago we collected & delivered donations to Joplin, MO. Today we are collecting for those devastated in Moore, OK. Over a dozen of my own family members are throughout the OKC area, my cousin and her family live in Moore, OK – amazingly they are all okay! It was many hours of worry & concern waiting to hear from all of them last night. We are blessed…time to pay it forward. My cousin Cora is a nurse at Norman Regional and her husband is a firefighter with the City of Moore. Dustin rode out the storm with their 2 boys in the storm shelter. Dustin continues to work at the school today – directly involved in the rescue and recovery effort.
Please know there are many, many ways you can help including simple donations to the Red Cross and Salvation Army. But if you are so inclined to support our efforts, we will be collecting again, will personally deliver, and the details are as follows:
“Operation Lovie” is in FULL EFFECT! We are coordinating with our family and friends in Moore, OK to deliver directly to those in need. “Operation Lovie”— FOCUSED on new blankets and stuffed animals to comfort babies and children. Also, pet supplies: food (dog/cat) and beds. DONATIONS- gift cards to Target, Wal-Mart, etc. This is what we are focusing on collecting specifically to deliver to those affected.
Please deliver to my house THIS WEEK: Tuesday evening after 6PM, Wed evening after 6PM or Thursday morning! Or message me to coordinate an alternate plan. My sister and mom will be delivering Memorial Day weekend. Leaving KC Friday.
Thank you for supporting the victims and first responders. Let’s show them some love from Kansas City.
Just too many reminders of how life can change in an instant…it helps knowing we can help others in need! 🙂
Teal went on to post an exact list of supplies needed and I spent an hour at WalMart this morning. I bought diapers, wipes, diaper rash cream, dog and cat food, pillows, shampoo, toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant, Neosporin, medications for little ones & adults, soap, washcloths, pacifiers, small blanket-style loveys for kids, underwear for kids and adults, socks, and I can’t remember what else. Then I asked Teal if the stuffed animals had to be new (she said no, as long as “gently” used!) because this was a teachable moment for my twins. I asked them to go through their closets and toy room and weed out all the stuffed animals they wanted to share with the kids who lost theirs. I pointed out that if the tables were turned, we’d hope people would reach out to us in the same way. They eagerly filled some bags. Then I went through Piper’s baby toy collection and grabbed some board books as well.
I loaded my car with the rest of everything, the twins jumped in with me, and we brought everything to Teal’s home.
And you know what?
I feel better.
Because I did something good. And because of Teal and her family, I know the supplies will go straight to those in need (unlike texting a random number and who knows what really happens with your dollars). I’m grateful to them for collecting all the items once again and making sure they’re delivered into the hands of those who need them.
Thank you, Teal. You’re an angel.
Doing good for others means doing good for me. I strive to keep doing it in ways big and small, as often as I can. Doing good makes me feel better about myself. It’s like a high.
And I hope those affected by the tornadoes know…that even if we can’t physically be there to help clear debris, find lost pets, recover old photos or heirlooms or irreplaceable mementos…that we’re doing what we can. And I? Have been unable to stop thinking about everyone there.
Oklahoma, I carry you in my heart. I wish I could do more.
Here are a few pics from my trunk as I filled it at WalMart, but you can’t see very well.