The Saddest Cookie of All
I’ll never be too proud to admit that sometimes, I can be a dolt. The very first time (and only time ever, mind you) that I was involved in a “car accident” happened all because of an ice cream cone. True story. It seems that my preoccupation with food is an expansive monster. If ever you need to tell me something important, I wouldn’t recommend doing it over something yummy. When there’s food around, it (not you) is what has my undivided attention.
Late last night, my bestie and I were craving something sweet and ducked into the only spot we knew that would be serving French Pastries at 3 am.
Completely engrossed in my bright sugary medley of things, I didn’t notice the man stomping out into the atrium who’s sole job was to yell, apparently. I almost peed in my pants (sorry for TMI). At 3 am on a Wednesday, the bakery is pretty empty and quiet anyways and I was comfortably perched on my padded chair, with my plate, tucked in a corner alone, waiting for my friend to come back with Tea. “Get up, I’m calling the Cops!” he’s yelling. It then struck me that behind me, hunched over in booths, were clumps of Kids, here and there, obviously homeless. They sat, staring back at this man, clutching their tattered packs, hoods stretched over their heads, wearing not the look of insolence or aggression but fatigue, weariness. Quicker than you can say “overpriced cookie,” they were gone and I was left with a nibbled plate of cookies and sadness.
Where will they sleep tonight? tomorrow? the day after? Where is their Family? Do they have Family? Are they worried, are they looking for them? What do they eat? Are they well? What happens when it thunderstorms like it did on Tuesday?
I always have a bag of non perishables that I carry around in my car to give to the homeless man at that busy intersection that no one seems to have time to pause at. Too busy. I volunteer. Obviously, that’s not enough. I didn’t receive a culinary degree. I went to school for Psychology and Human Services. Part of my graduation requirements were to maintain a year long service internship at the local Ministry. Sure, there’s a pile of second hand clothing to wear and lots of canned food to eat. I didn’t get a chance to talk to these Kids last night…was it drugs? abuse? I don’t know, but they’re falling through the cracks. The Ministry I was at was like most. They do the best they can but can’t keep up with the demand. There’s a vicious cycle that’s being perpetuated and it’s the Kids that are suffering. Angelina Jolie can’t adopt all of them.
I’ll keep doing what I can. I hope you do too.
I think I’ll start making my sack lunches for the initiative I headed a long time ago. I wonder why I ever stopped. (I got too absorbed in me, I suppose). It was called “Pack Away Hunger.” 50 sack lunches with an inspiring message, uptown, every Sunday. Once, I discovered two teens hiding out in an abandoned building. Life comes at you so hungrily that
you forget I forgot, that it’s not just about Squishy’s or Monster’s. I’ll be sure to update y’all about Sundays, “Pack Away Hunger.”
I just hope that they know that they are loved.
Be grateful for all that you have. Your Mother was right. There are people out there with nothing.
Blessed and hoping to share my blessings,
Your Squishy Monster