weekend in

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We had family over to celebrate El’s birthday yesterday.   Today we took it easy.  Stayed inside where it was warm and cozy.  Ate leftovers – quiche, salad, cupcakes and ice cream.  Knit.  Rested.  Watched the snow outside the windows.  Listened to some new tunes and some old tunes.   Laughed.

We’re so fortunate.  I say it ALL the time, but I am always thinking about how good we have it.   We have a wonderful little house.  We have amazing friends and the best family.   We are blessed with functional bodies and remarkably good health.  We have jobs and money in the bank, lots of food in the fridge, a car in the driveway . . .   Life is great.   But it isn’t for everyone.   I’m overwhelmed with sadness and frustration when I see people who are cold and wandering the streets.   It’s not fair.   Sure I’ve worked hard in my life, but that’s not why I am where I am or have what I have.   I have had the support of a lot of people (I call them Team Nadine, but they don’t even know they’re on it),  an education, and an upbringing in middle-class – I know the hidden rules and language needed to navigate our society’s middle-class systems.  I have no disabilities or addictions – knitting doesn’t count.   I have white privilege.  I am of sound mind and body.   I have been VERY lucky.  I have made some bad choices, but I have not had to pay for them quite so dearly as losing everything.   So it’s with this that I will be walking this year’s Coldest Night of the Year walk again.   This will be my third walk.  It’s just a little walk for  a BIG problem.   Everyone deserves to have a home.  Both girls are joining me.  The teen wouldn’t miss it for the world – I love that I don’t even have to ask her,  she just adds it to her calendar, and that’s that.  You can sponsor me here – every little bit counts.  Or maybe you’d like to join us.  It’s all good.

I do this walk to open my children’s eyes to poverty.  It exists here.  It’s real.  That’s the truth.  People don’t have enough. But  I am also challenging their perceptions or misconceptions around poverty.  People who are experiencing poverty are not lazy, crazy or hazy.  Living in poverty is hard work.  It’s anything but easy.   Many people who suffer from mental illness or addiction often end up living in poverty, and sometimes people living in poverty become mentally ill, and sometimes people living in poverty turn to substance and alcohol use to take away the pain of poverty.  Sometimes it’s one crappy decision, and sometimes it’s a whole bunch of bad choices.  Sometimes poverty is all you know because you were born into it.   It’s complex.  It sucks.  So we’ll do the walk.  And we’ll have conversations amongst ourselves and, more importantly, with others.  We’ll give what we have to panhandlers.  We’ll look people on the street in the eyes and acknowledge them.  We’ll knit some extra hats or buy extra socks to give to the shelter.  We’ll give a voice to those that aren’t being heard.  We’ll keep doing stuff like this until hopefully we don’t have to.

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  1. […] we are also a week away from our Coldest Night of the Year walk, and The Homeless Avengers are raising money again for Mission Services.  The girls start asking […]


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