If ever I am looking for a reason to be thankful, yesterday will remain be a very good experience to cherish in my heart.
Glide is an amazing organization that supports so many people in our community of San Francisco. They feed hundreds of people a day, provide shelter for those that don’t have a place to go, and open their hearts with employees and volunteers that provide love and validation of humanity.
Yesterday I volunteered (on a whim actually the night before as while I’m “unemployed” I have time to give) to provide service to the Women’s Thanksgiving Luncheon. I didn’t know the nature of the luncheon, but when I got there we were informed it was for the Women’s Center– domestic violence survivors group of women. I learned a startling statistic about the severity of domestic violence in San Francisco. I also learned there are education and training programs for police officers so they can handle it appropriately when called to a home. The people of Glide hold their hands in trials, wipe their tears when they need it, and provide hugs, food and shelter to keep them safe. They are often their only support system- they just love to love.
Did you know that it’s been 40 months since a woman has been murdered in domestic violence situation in San Francisco? 40 months is a record… the average murders were around TEN prior.
There were many volunteers (all women for obvious reasons) and the women were so friendly and sweet. Men did the cooking and the head chef Bruce was an absolute delight. You could tell he has so much love in his heart for what he does. The food that he was able to put together was amplified by his extra effort to make it look gorgeous.
Our role was tiny in this luncheon we were there to serve them. It was all about the women being treated as guests.
When asked what were you thankful for, at first one or two hands went up. Then after a few of the women openly and fearlessly shared, another hand went up- until the entire room was done sharing their thanks. These women were grateful for so many things that we often take for granted:
- Their children
- Their lives
- That they have fought and won the battle of addiction
- That they wake up every day and are not alone
There wasn’t a dry eye in the room. And then there was the singing. Sweet voices all sang beautiful songs and we joined them and clapped along in joy. A few of these women proudly told me that they would be singing for Glide at the Union Square tree-lighting ceremony on Friday. I’m glad I’ll get to hear their angelic voices again!
That morning I had a meditation session (Oprah and Deepak’s 21 day challenge day 13!) and it was on being thankful. I am thankful for so much in my life, but yesterday will be forever embossed in my heart. I am thankful that I had the opportunity to serve these soulful, blessed women. I am thankful that everyone gets a second, third or fourth chance to embrace change and grow.
Support Glide if you can. They do amazing things for the lost in San Francisco. They help people become found again.
Support the Women’s Center
$75 provides a hot breakfast for the drop-in group in a safe, nurturing environment
Wishing you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving!