Monday, May 21, 2007

I don't want to go but...

I really do NOT want to go to Honduras this week. I want to stay home with DH. Play with the dogs. Write. Watch American TV. Listen to American music. Eat American food. Drive to work and talk with my co-workers, brainstorm ideas for creative campaigns (the schedule today).

I don't want to drive 45 minutes south to Miami, sit in an airport, get on an American Airlines flight for 2.5 hours with elbows in my side, people oozing over their seats and the drink cart banging my elbows. Then arrive and drive 2.5 hours to our destination, a town north of San Pedro Sula.

I don't want to see any more poverty.

I don't want to see hungry children, orphaned children, women who need help, who just want a little dignity and a little hope for their kids.

I'm burned out. Nearly 14 years of this type of work, seeing suffering, destitution, need, haunted, pain-filled faces... has worn me down.

And then I start to think, what if? What if I didn't go? What if I were wealthy enough from my romance books (insert big laugh here) that I could simply stay home and write and could give up the day job forever?

Wow. It would be really really tough. Because as much as I don't want to go to Honduras, I must. I'm compelled.

So much pain and suffering in the world. And I have a chance to make a difference.

Yeah, it sounds corny and sentimental, but it's true. I come home, write appeals, raise $$$ and feed children, build decent homes for families, give women self-help training and help them try to achieve economic independence.

I keep thinking of the restavek girl I met in Haiti two weeks ago. The call made to authorities to find her a new home, take her away from slavery.

What if I weren't there that day?

If I have a chance to make the world a better place, I must take it. I have to keep slogging.

I'm not trying to sound noble or wave a banner calling people to action, I'm just stating the facts in my particular case. I work at a day job that can and does make a small difference in the world. So I have to keep trying.

Because trying is better than not trying.

3 comments:

carrie_lofty said...

You made me tear up this morning. Strength always inspires me. I hope you have a safe and useful trip. (And I giggled at the Nora Roberts dream yesterday. I'd rather be shopping, too.) Take care!

Mary Stella said...

Take care of yourself while you're taking care of other people, Bonnie. Be safe. I'll keep you in my thoughts.

Bonnie Vanak said...

Thanks Carrie and Mary... I hope you guys have a good week!