It’s been a rocky little while. Couple of weeks? Few months? Hard to pin it down, actually. It doesn’t matter, it’s just felt kind of rough. Within the rockiness have been some sense of security things (i.e. financial), fears around competency, and, well, more. It’s all felt very true.
This morning, I read a story about a young couple in Northern California who have been displaced by the Paradise fire. Between the two of them, they have six kids from previous marriages. The kids were always safe, but the two of them barely made it out of their home. The only things left from the space they lived is what they could grab on the way out the door. In other words, not much. Their house burned to the ground. Being renters who didn’t have renter’s insurance, they are truly left with nothing. They’ve been trying to find a place to stay since, with little luck.
The young woman, Whitney Vaughan, told CNN:
Today, after another day of being unable to locate any housing, my husband and I sat in our car at the park and cried. I feel like giving up. We, like so many other families, have nothing left. I don’t even have words to describe what my family has gone through this week.”
“I feel like giving up.”
These words stung me. I’ve felt this same way. But my feeling this way came from a distortion in the experience I was having. I find this woman’s bravery to be compelling. I can’t even imagine what she is going through, and will continue to go through long after the news crews have moved on to new stories. The next tragedy.
I’m trying to hold my life in perspective through the lens of this family. They are only eight people out of the countless who are truly struggling. To say that life is difficult is an understatement. To be clear about the blessings we have is a responsibility of those of us with privilege. And, further, the responsibility to use that privilege to help those in need is great. Today, I hold these people in my heart. I hope to do the same every day.