Tom and I just returned from a VERY quick trip down to Houston to deliver some goods and hopefully DO some good, and I have to say I wasn’t sure what to expect. In dire situations, people are often in shock, being with people going through awful times is never an easy thing, and I had no idea what the damage was going to look like, not to mention asking people for their time or their hard earned money can be supremely awkward. So going into it all, I was a little nervous.
Of course, my fears were immediately put to rest by the insane amount of donations from Austinites we received to take down and the gracious, beautiful people at the Houston Womens Center and the Houston chapter of the National Black United Front from the second we pulled up to both organizations. Despite all they are facing, there were broad smiles, hearty handshakes, and the most beautiful thing in the world to see, people helping people, just because it’s the right thing to do. I shed a tear in the car on the way home, no lie, and Tom and I talked at length about the human spirit and how it’s clear just how much we all have in common as opposed to how we all seem so different, especially lately.
As Cat Stevens said, baby, it’s a wild world, and the bad aspects of everything seem to outweigh the good, with the KKK running rampant, North Korea seemingly ready to blow our asses up at any moment, Trumpian anger and ignorance ricocheting around our country and so much opposition and tension in the world at large. But in the wake of devastation like what Harvey left our Houston neighbors with, it’s gratifying, heartening, it’s fucking WONDERFUL to see that when the shit hits the fan, we can set everything aside and just HELP. Side by side. Hand in hand. LOOK at the line of cars full of donations and people coming to help, and the piles of generousness strewn about – and this is just ONE of many shelters across the city! People can and will still surprise you with their generosity and their kindness if you let them. If you ask for help, you’ll still most likely GET what you need.
The lesson? Love still wins, if you let it.
You just stay strong.