Sunday, May 29, 2011
Perceptions are a funny thing. How many times have we pre-judged someone by how they look, what they were wearing or perhaps what they were doing.
We had seen this arrowhead man down by the river before but he was talking to some construction workers at the time, but we were curious when it appeared he had quite a collection of arrowheads.
So the three of us, Me, Chris and our son Jacob were taking our evening walk down by the River. As we were walking we see that the Arrowhead Man has set up his collection on a picnic table. He had some driftwood on the table and had all of his collection laid out. We decided to stop and take a look.
Little did we know that not only were we looking at handmade arrowheads, but Arrowhead man (or Steve as we found out later) was quite an intelligent and informative guy. He could have worked at a museum or as a guide because he seemed to have a lot of knowledge about many things.
He had Jacob mesmerized explaining the different places he found the rocks that eventually were made into arrowheads. We probably spent a good 30 minutes just listening to Steve and getting to know a little about this Arrowhead man who hangs out by the riverside.
If you ever find yourself passing by someone like Steve who may appear to be homeless or a drifter, just stop and chat for a minute, like us, you may meet someone very interesting who may teach you a thing or two.
Saturday, May 7, 2011
If you haven't noticed by now me and my sisters (and our late brother) did not have the greatest childhood, as I am sure many have not. But...this is not a blog to discuss that. The old saying "when God closes one door...."
Almost twelve years ago I met the man of my dreams. I could not have imagined that I would also be blessed with the real Mother that I never had, and her name is Grace. She never had a daughter, but was blessed with two sons, one being my wonderful husband. I believe with all of my heart that he is the sweet and compassionate man he is because he had such a warm and loving mother.
Grace is one of those moms that you see on It's a Wonderful Life or Leave it to Beaver. She always has a smile and cheerful Hello. She decorates her home with style, but warmth. She is everyone's friend and never makes you feel like you are inferior to her. She is the kind of mother-in-law everyone hopes for.
Don't get me wrong, Grace has gone through some very difficult challenges in her life, one being cancer. But like everything else in her life, she fought it with grace and dignity. She never gave up, never got angry about it and never wanted anyone to feel sorry for her. Best of all, she is a Survivor!
I will always believe that God not only gave me Chris, but that he included a wonderful mother in the package just for me. She always makes me feel special. She has been a good listener and shown me that she cares about all I have endured. She welcomed me into her family with open arms and treats me like the daughter she never had.
This Mother's Day I will be thinking of her. She is the Mother I never had but always dreamed of. She has given me so much over the years and I could never repay her. I will always be thankful to God for giving me Grace!
Friday, May 6, 2011
I never really noticed the homeless under the Exit 0 overpass until recently when driving by to get up on the highway. Today, we were going by when they were being handed food containers out of someone's vehicle.
My little boy wanted to know why they lived under there. I honestly didn't know what to tell him. I don't really know myself. I know we have shelters but I am not familiar with any rules they may have in taking people in. But it did get me thinking. How many of these homeless have been this way for years?
I do realize that there are many different circumstances in why some people or families may become homeless and I find it very tragic, because it could happen to any of us. I know that I would appreciate the helping hand if it was me or my family in need of food or shelter. I guess my concern is, are we enabling some of these homeless to never get on their own two feet. If we keep taking food and clothes and other necessities to them, won't there be some that find no need to better themselves.
Do we have homeless here in Jeffersonville that have been in that condition for years? I saw one man getting food that I have seen in that same condition for many years. Why is he still homeless? Why hasn't some of these Exit O volunteers worked with these people to help them find jobs, homes, some kind of trade so that they can become self reliant and not rely on the goodwill of others until the day they die.
With some of these homeless, it just seems to me if people keep taking them food, clothing, blankets, etc. they will never be motivated to do anything on their own. I would imagine that since Exit 0 has become more known that many of the homeless from other counties or perhaps cities have come here because they know they will be taken care of on a daily basis and all they have to do is sit under the overpass and wait for everything to be brought to them.
What can we do as longtime citizens of this town to not just provide handouts to the homeless, but teach them to become self sufficient, make sure they acquire the skills they need to take care of themselves and/or their families. Like my husband said, the ducks at Perrin Park know just where to hang out because there is one spot where all the people stop to feed them. In essence, Exit O has become that duck spot.
Let us stop this vicious cycle of providing these career homeless people just the material things and start providing them hope for a productive future.