Ever since I can remember, I have always felt some "kind of way" during the month of May. Even during one of my graduation ceremonies I felt a mixture of happiness and sadness all at the same time. I was excited about the future and the things that were to come. Yet, I grieved silently for those whose lives would end violently around this time of year; especially in the inner cities across the nation. I grieved because they would never experience the high of possibility mixed with naivety and hope. They were instead faced with the harsh realities of their decisions and there were no second chances for them. Since living back in Chicago I face the dichotomy of such realities daily. It comes alive in the news reports and especially when I ride the train. I see people that were once very much alive, replaced my only mere shells of their hopes and dreams. This reality encouraged me to flee over a decade ago, and run towards hope and a new beginning; for fear that even the touch of such a shell would render me infected with a similar hopelessness.
I have chosen to serve in the month of May. Each weekend in May I am serving in a different way. Last weekend I had the pleasure of serving on the panel at the University of Chicago career day conference for high school students. I had so much I wanted to tell them, but I restrained myself and answered their questions to the best of my ability. This weekend, I will host the Yale Day of Service in Evanston at a local non-profit. The following weekend I will walk with Northwestern University students for Autism Speaks in Soldier Field; helping to raise awareness about a less talked about marginalized group: special needs children. I am serving not because I want a special badge or recognition, but to distract my mind from the inevitable realities of the societal disparities that exist across the nation. I hope that through these small acts of service that change will be invoked. Service also distracts me from the harsh realities; the ones that allow for a student to graduate with hopes and dreams, while another child’s life is cut short. I am hopeful for the future and I trust God; praying earnestly for change and equality. I hope that despite the inevitable reality of tragedy, that change is on the horizon.
Oh, and I am also reading ten books this month and reporting them via this blog twice a week. Stay tuned for the book reports about ten books I found at my local library in the used book section. #busymonth
Filed under: Uncategorized