Thursday, March 6, 2014

No Rain, No Rainbow

This Thursday, a day filled with not only Florida showers, but was filled with moments I hope to remember for a very long time in my life.    

A lesson to learn for me personally related to conquering fears and controlling your own future today.   This happens when one molds their own story through experience and harsh realities.  

I started the day by voluteering with Habitat for Humanity for Collier County.  The first half of my time there was spent on hammering boards on top of planks.  Did I not mention my fear of heights?  
Not long after, our group started caulking the inside of a house.  The fact that it began to pour was the reason behind us working indoors.    

The raining of cats and dogs was not my cup of tea at all at first.  In fact, the idea of it bothered me since I checked the weather app on my phone and woke up to skies filled with grey this morning.  I have a big fear of getting my hair wet because I am not too fond of its natural, curly state.  The frizz is also uncontrollable.  Now just imagine this all consuming my mind while trying to play attention to hammerming my whole hand to the house.   I realized all this stress I added to my time there was very unnecessary, and here is why:
The rain began to bring so much thought to my mind, and assited with my processing of another moment that occurred tonight.  Being one of minorities of the trip, and the only African-American of the group helped me learn to appreciate my culture and to connect with those do not look exactly the same as I do on the outside.  But it's just skin, it's just a different background.  And that is for all of us: even those in the same ethniticy.  We can even understand that when we get involved with much of the immigrants we have encountered this week.  

Meeting Gloria Hernandez, a Mexican paralegal of the Immokalee area, and gaining knowledge of her experience in working in agriculture and her involvements now in the movement toward immigration reform, taught me so much about being grateful and appreciating that we are one.  Words cannot simply explain what we took from her encounter, but it ended on a sympathetic, yet fulfilling note.  I cannot speak for all of us, but what I can say is that when someone tells you of their hardships, like being sold and traveling up and down two countries to make for a better life, you realize how trifling your problems are.  How insignificant was my fear of hammering while standing on a piece of wood, or how petty was it for me to become worrysome of the way my hair looks naturally?

I want to thank God for leading me to this realization, for the whole group for accepting and complimenting me for the way a truly am, and Gloria for the eye-opener this evening.  
This trip, and much of today was extremely humbling.  

- Jess

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