Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Crisis presents great opportunity. I see this around me.

Yesterday, I went to see an incredible woman with a life story so difficult that one wonders how she copes. She copes very well.

M moved to the Coast to be with her fiance. He died after the wedding reception, dropping dead from a heart condition. Months later, Katrina blew six feet of water into her home, leaving her with homeless.

These facts tell just a smidgen of M's life story. If you hear about her, your first thought is, "how awful, how can she cope?". When you meet her, you know that she has risen beyond these facts, used them to surge forward into a new life with humor.

After the death of her husband, she called her nationwide network of friends to help her grieve. She went on a cruise with her family. She began to do youth work at her church. She reached out.

After her home was destroyed, she called to her network of friends again to come help her. They came and she had a group living in her open carport, travel trailer and tents to help her rebuild. Throughout the past eight months, she's hosted a variety of relatives and friends and they've helped her rebuild.

She is working with disaster relief at her church, working with youth and being a beacon of light to the weary and distressed.

I wish each of you could sit down with her for 15 minutes.

I don't feel sorry for her, I envy her. She knows how to ask for help without being "needy"; she is vulnerable and open in ways I can't imagine while allowing others the same vulnerablity and openness. Her genuine loving presence is healing, welcoming and unusual.

Great crisis presents great opportunity.
She'll tell you that she feels "God real strong" and you'll know what she means.


Songbird said...

I'm glad you got to spend some time with her. The power of connections with others is immeasurable, isn't it?

mibi52 said...

One of the ladies whose house we worked on when StrongOpinions and I were down there said, "The good Lord gives me a new reason for hope every day." What a gift of grace for us both to have met her!

Sounds like this lady is very similar in her approach to her situation. Blessings on her, and on you.

Anonymous said...

This gives me hope too. I have a friend from N.O. whose family lost everything too, and since Katrina, her mother & grandmother have died of previous-to-Katrina health problems. They were not able to die "at home" near N.O. friends. My friend is suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome and just cannot find the strength to reach out to anyone.

Do you think -- from your close proximity -- that more people are like your M.? Or are more folks there like my friend?

St. Casserole said...

J., I don't know how the numbers go. I see PTS stuff going on around me and feel that I have a few symptoms of PTS, too.
Can you do something for your friend? Go see her or fly her to your home? Her losses are dreadful.

Lorna said...

Thank you for sharing this. Yes I'd like 15 minutes with her :) she sounds an awesome woman of God