Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A LONG TERM VOLUNTEER'S CONFESSION

DAY 22



I thought "I" could do it.

I thought I could visit, photograph, and write about 29 neighborhoods during the 29 days of August to mark the 2nd anniversary of Katrina and the levee breaks. And do my volunteer work by day!

It has been so hard for my ego self to come to terms with the fact that "I" cannot achieve my self-imposed goal to honour the peoples of New Orleans on the 2nd anniversary of Katrina and the levee breaks by visiting, writing, and photographing 29 neighborhoods so that those who read this blog could see how much help is still needed down here.

It hit me hard last week when the ego "I" realized that I have not driven over to New Orleans East. I have been everywhere else (except south of Violet, LA) - especially in the city. I have made so many commitments to do so and then choose to not follow through.

"I" had to come to terms with the fact that I do not have room in my heart to bear the suffering of the people in New Orleans East - I can't take in any new experiences of the suffering of my brothers and sisters; and my heart feels so drawn to the people I have come to love that I serve in the 9th Ward that I find it hard to leave before I feel my volunteer work there is finished.

How humbling to find out how small my heart, my consciousness, still is. This is the second time I have found myself exhausted from compassion fatigue. My "ego" wants me to be able to be more than I am at this time. My soul reminds me when it can get a word in, that expansion of my heart takes time ..."I" am slowly getting it. One day - one moment - at a time. My heart has to grow, become stronger at its own pace. My soul is in charge of this process not my "ego". Okay, I remember saying this the last time I was fatigued. I hope I really am learning!

So what your Planetary Sister has decided to do is continue to write a story a day to honour the city and people I have come to love - resting by day and posting each night. I have taken the week off from volunteer work and am spending my days doing nothing more than lying out in the sun, enjoying life in my little shotgun and exercising when I have the energy. (Okay, I'll be totally transparent - maybe I am engaged in just a little helping - with Katy, as she has taken on cleaning out Donald's house, I am "being there" when I can, an hour here or there. I found out tonight that I will be able to bring to Mrs. G a couch, a dining room set and a land line telephone, on Friday, things that she can really use and that I feel will help give her a visual sense of hope - especially when she walks around her unfinished house - hope that she will eventually get out of the FEMA trailer and into her home. She is so tired and has been through so much. I don't know that I could go through what she has gone through on her own, at 74. I really admire her courage and faith.)

I know, I know, I have so much to learn about helping and serving. Keep me in your prayers, your meditations, your hearts - keep all of us, everywhere, that seek to be "with" those who are suffering in your consciousness. Send us your loving thoughts and lots of Light!

Jah Bless.

PEACE.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I find that my capacity to take in large amounts of suffering is limited. That capacity is always being stretched, and through compassion and a sense of responsibility, it grows, but I am often finding that another sense of compassion for myself and those around me cause me to care for myself, or to tend to one set of responsibilities instead of those that I have committed myself to or feel a duty to uphold. There seems to be an 'order of necessity' but it isn't always the order that I'm comfortable with. Being at peace with where I am called, and letting go of what I need to let go of is very much in the forefront for me these days.