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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

I love looking back...

I love looking back at my blog. It is a compilation of my thoughts...at difficult, fun, tiring, exciting, wonderful, bad, and intrigued moments. It gives me solace when things aren't going exactly right. It helps me realize that I can get through, b/c I have done it a million and one times. The good times and bad times are what make us who we are. I couldn't be me without each and every one of them. It is sort of like looking back through an old picture album and seeing what you didn't know you remembered...only in thought rather than vision. It is a different sort of retrospect that I rather enjoy and appreciate. It is easier to reflect when their is something to reflect upon.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

So, I gave her five bucks....

I've often wondered if I should give people money when they come up to me asking (or begging) for it. There has been several times when I was not sure of the intention of the person asking. Are they going to use it for food or another necessity item OR is it going to be spent on drugs, alcohol, or something else I do not approve of someone spending my hard earned money on.

Well, yesterday at Walmart, as I was walking to my car, I see a lady walking car to car in the parking lot. I kind of figured she wanted something, and as much as I hate to admit it, I had that "Oh, great" mentality as she slowly approached me. Now, don't get me wrong, I KNOW there are dire straights, and I am ALL for helping my fellow man (or woman), but when people ask for money, it scares me. I always wonder: Am I going to get mugged? Am I perpetuating a problem? (those sorts of questions).

So, the lady walked up, not too close, but close enough to where I could get a pretty good look at her. She was worn looking, if that makes sense. I wouldn't say she was dirty or anything, but she looked tired and disheveled. She proceeded to ask me for money to put gasoline in her car. She said she was stranded without gas, and she had to make it all the way back to Durant from Denison. She wanted me to go look at her gas gauge, but I wouldn't do it. I handed her a $5 bill.

Kind of instinctively I made a decision that I would have made with more thought. I told the lady that I didn't need to see her gas gauge, and honestly I didn't really care what the money was for. I told her, "If you are asking for it, then you must need it more than I do." Now, I didn't know what the woman would REALLY do with that $5, and I must have not really cared, or I wouldn't have given it to her.

And, although I didn't care what she did with the money (I mean, I couldn't control what she did with it), as I turned around to finish loading my car with things I THOUGHT I needed (mostly NOT necessities), I watch as her beat up car that looks like it is on its last rope pulls into lane at the gas pump.

I know I made the right decision. I don't know that lady's circumstance, her life, her reason, her problems, her thoughts. If she would have driven out of that parking lot without stopping at the pump, I would have still felt like my decision was the right one. If she had spent that money on drugs or alcohol or simply just pocketed it, I still would have made the right decision.

Do you want to know why I felt like it was right either way? Because it was. I don't need that $5. I don't need that fatty Arby's meal next door. I can go without just once. People go without every day. People are mistrusted and misused every day. We do not have a magic power that tells use people's intentions, whether good or bad. Besides, good and bad is relative, isn't it? Even illicit drugs can become a life line (as much as I disapprove of addictions).

Need is need is need. If I had not helped her, would anyone? How long had she been there? Those questions are not ones with REAL answers. All I KNOW are my OWN thoughts. I KNOW that I feel better not saying "no". I KNOW that I feel better not knowing what she was going to do with it rather than not knowing what she would do without it. 

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