Kids. I don’t have any of my own, yet. But they are a rare and fortunate treasure. We try to protect them, whether they’re ours or not, in any way possible. There are laws that say we must and special days dedicated to remembering how precious they are. These are broad strokes. Broad because it’s difficult to scoop up the thousands that need protecting into your arms all at once and fulfil all their needs.
Today I met kids who slipped through someone’s fingers. Kids who need such basic things but greet you with a more sincere smile than those who, I know, have everything. The Twitter Blanket Drive, Tippy Toes and The Shoebox Operation invited me along to hand donated blankies to the cutest munchkins I’d met in a while. they enthusiastically huddled and cuddled their furry companions and munched on oranges and then floated away to life as usual.
When we were done, I got home, caught a movie with hubby and then had a hot shower to defrost from the day.
That’s when it hit me. I have a shower. With hot running water. The longer I stood under it, the more the guilt overwhelmed me. Three taps. That was all an entire community in Melkbos has. Three outdoor taps that spout cold water into drums. Stepping out of the shower onto the warm floor was when I cracked. Warm floor. We’ve all berated Eskom for leaving us in the dark for a few hours. What would you do if electricity wasn’t an option? Camping in “the bush” and “roughing it” for fun is the most many of us can do. If that. Three taps out back would make most people I know, cringe.
There will be no promise from me to not complain when my luxuries are disturbed because I know I will slip. What I will do, is keep reminding myself how fortunate I am by forcing myself to see the reality that lies only a few kilometers from my door, by helping at every opportunity.
I can only hope those of you reading this will watch the social networks for opportunities to help out and give back. It makes little people smile.