I remember my aunt giving a spiritual thought during a family Christmas party a few years ago (I mean a long time ago, I was pretty young). She talked about people. I have always been interested in people; I even went as far as to study how they communicate in college. While my aunt was talking about people she mentioned people living in different situations. She caught my attention when she started talking about homeless people. Homeless people have always intrigued me. I have always wondered how they got there. My aunt gave us the idea to keep gift cards in our cars so that if we ever saw someone we could give them something substantial and could be used at the grocery store. I remember this story a few years ago and decided it was something I needed to do. I have a wonderful job that allows me to support myself and save for my future. I could spare a few dollars a month. I decided each time I went to Albertsons I would pick up a 5 dollar gift card. It wasn’t a lot, but it was enough to get some food, a razor, or something warm. I kept them in my front cup holder and waited. I didn’t have to wait too long. As I drove out of the parking lot, there was a woman who was on the corner. She looked tired, beat up, and worn out. I came to a stop and rolled my window down and gave her the gift card. She looked at me with a smile and thanked me. As I left, I had this feeling that I was missing something. I was missing her story.
The next time I was at Albertsons I picked up two 5 dollar gift cards and left them in my car. During my lunch break one day, I had an INSANE craving for fried rice. I knew just the place to get it, Pho Tam. After getting my delicious pork fried rice, I went and parked my car next to one of my favorite places…a graveyard (I know creepy). I sat there and ate. I wondered about all the people who had passed on and the stories they left behind. They were no longer there to tell their story, and I wanted to know why the baby only made it a year, or how the father lost his life, and how many sweet little grandchildren Margie had. As I sat there pondering there was a knock on my window. I jumped, almost hitting my head on the ceiling, spilling fried rice everywhere. I looked to see a man on his bike. You could tell from his clothes that his life was not one of fancy things. I rolled down my window and he asked me if he could have a few quarters to get something for lunch. As I sat there selfishly with my fried rice, I dug around to find some quarters. I didn’t have any. That is when I saw the gift card. I said will this work? He looked at me and said wow; I can actually eat a full meal today. After talking for only a minute he left. I had learned he was trying to find a job so he could get a place to live. It was at that moment that I decided that I needed to share the stories of the people I find.
Everyone has a past, a present, and a future. No one’s is the exact same. We all are going through different things. Each individual human has special qualities that make them who they are. They have all been influenced by something. I decided it was time to use the internet for good. I have built up plenty of followers on Life of a Clare Bear. I wanted to give back to those who read my snarky posts about marriage, silly animal laws, religion, hunting and family. I decided it was time to do more; it was time to share people’s unknown stories.
I don’t know where this will take me or what the impact will be, I have already had people come forward saying they sought help or felt comforted that there was hope after reading a post. To me, one saved life or one person who regains hope makes it all worth it. The world has so much good in it still, but it is getting harder and harder to find. Through The People I Find, I hope to show you that people have a past, but that’s not what I am concerned about; it’s what they can do with it now and in the future.
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