“Words may speak volumes, but the little actions we do connect us all.”
People who are homeless or have become homeless, have gone through series of events. These series of events happens in many different ways and are endless – From violent relationships, job loss to broken homes. Sometimes, it is a perfect storm for bad luck…
My passion of travelling not only brought me to some of the most beautiful and exotic destinations but to many streets where people call home. My passion for the homeless originated from a point within the depths of my heart. Honestly, I believe that it was an innate passion that lay dormant for many of my childhood years. Growing up in a family where I witness my mum’s hungry eyes and the struggle she had to go through, I realised that we only needed things we really needed. At the early ages of my childhood, I knew, we never had the luxury I wanted and I was too young to realise. We were just another class of people below the main stream. When I spoke to many of my very close friends, they confirmed my beliefs about my passion.
At the early stages of my teenage years, even today, the highlight of my life is going for evening walks and hanging out with homeless people and giving them food and cloths. Even though, I hanged out with people who are homeless but I still felt distant from them. At times, it just seems like something is missing no matter how many homeless people I engaged with, but until I take a moment to hear their personal stories. Like in any normal conversation, when each homeless person that I come in contact with telling their stories, I try to avoid asking too many questions. When I constantly interrupt their stories with personal questions, it makes them feel frustrated and they think that their point is not getting across very well. My response was to listen, nod, repeat back and show sense of understanding.
Although they lack food, water and shelter, they are grateful for what they did have as well as what they were given. Due to the busyness of life, I often tend to forget the things I do have when faced with obstacles or just going about my everyday life. Oprah Winfrey, once said:
“Be thankful for what you have. You will end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”
What I’have learned
In the 21st century, our modern culture has changed dramatically, we constantly change or update to latest technology whether it is mobile phones, television sets or motor vehicles and even social media statuses to match with the newest trends. Sometimes or I can say, many times, this leave me always wanting more and forgetting what I do have. I am sure to find joy amidst seemingly dark circumstances but there are always bright stars of positively in the dark skies of life waiting to be found. I should always remember to live in the moment.
While talking to a homeless person on the street who I met in the suburbs of San Diego, California, told me, “You all are living in the matrix and trying to keep up with society’s standards. I am at peace, since I take each day as it comes.” Always try to be present and get all you can from life since you only live once.
Just like any other parents advise, this has been on my mind since that day. I try to take things, little by little, one day at a time. As I continue to walk through the streets of Cairns, the lyrics of Al Green and Annie Lennox song keeps flooding into my mind, “Think of your fellow man,. give him a helping hand.” My impact may not be publicised, but it will be recognised by the individual whose life I have touched. Ultimately, we must all search our hearts to discover our passions. I have found my passion and I work on it “little by little” to make a change, I wish to see in the world. In my opinion, we can never have enough of that.
As I approach the end of 2022 and advance into the year 2023, I look into my lives moving forward. As I move forward, I need to make sure to leave space for memories for what I have gone through, especially with the pandemic. If this has taught me anything, I need to know that time is precious. Like money, time can be spent anyway you like it, but it can only be spent once. I know my past and I often over looked the truth. I need to know that everyone has their inner demons or a hidden pain. I need to think about how others feel and if I can, work to make someone else day a bit better, it simply put a smile on my face. Each day, it will have its own struggles but I also have opportunities that I can implement in the future.