Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The Pantry

Every now and then, everyone needs a good wake-up call. Just to kind of shock us, make us take a step back, and realize how good we have it.

I went down to the local food bank today, aka "The Pantry," to donate some things I had sitting in the cupboards. I love this food bank. The older ladies that work there are so kind and grateful for everyone that comes in with their boxes and bags of stuff. I discovered it right after Brendan was born. Being a new Mom, I was buying stuff left and right that Brendan didn't necessarily need. Not to mention, he went through numerous brands of baby bottles until we found one compatible for him, so I had dozens of abandoned brand new bottles, just sitting there looking stupid. The food bank was more than happy to take those off my hands for sure. So off I went again today, with my box full of Top Ramen, various soups, rice cereals, and pasta noodles.

I followed an old beat up car into the parking lot. This car didn't look fit to be sitting in a junkyard, let alone cruising down an actual street. It was pretty beat up and very noisy. I parked next to the car and happened to glance inside as I was emptying my goods from the trunk. It was sad. A man, roughly the husband's age, was unbuckling his little guy, about 2 years old, from his carseat. They both looked about as ragged as ragged gets. I followed them into the food bank (which, by the way, for you people with no manners out there--the guy had a toddler in his hands, yet still held the door for me) and sat the box on the counter. They stood behind me and a woman appeared from the back. She greeted me so nicely and handed me the sign-in sheet, then took the man and his child aside with some paperwork. While signing in, I could hear they were discussing the qualifications necessary to use the pantry. I just wanted. to. die. Could you hand over your precious kid and I promise to make sure he never goes hungry again??? Oh my God. I won't go into further detail just because even though I don't know this guy, I feel he's got the right to privacy and it's nobody's business why he's there. He's just a man, trying to make sure his family has something to eat tonight.

My question is: Why do I find it necessary to bitch about the small stuff all the time, when there are people in my own community who cannot afford to feed their children? Could you imagine lying in bed, knowing that your child probably didn't get enough to eat for dinner, and you really have no idea what's in store for the next day?

It made me want to hit the grocery store and come back with heaps of food. Heaps and heaps. All I can is thank goodness for places like The Pantry. Thank goodness for all of the people who donate food. That adorable little guy, if anything, deserves something to eat tonight.


Kelli said...

You are right. It is sad. I have seen the same thing over and over, and I think sometimes my speculations are hopefully worse than what their actual situation is. But the only thing I DO know, is people like us need to continue donating to places like that. Don't stop.

andria said...

Theres a lady who works MOPS for us who drives in from the next town. I can't believe her truck actually makes it there every other week. She works at whataburger every other day of the week to support her five kids because her deadbeat husband took off to another country with some chick. We pay her with gas cards, grocery store cards, and one of the ladies at the church always brings her TONS of groceries and slips it into the back of her truck while everyone's inside. I hear women in the meeting griping because their husband bought them costume jewelry GASP and they have no idea what this lady goes through who's taking care of their kids twice amonth. IT's very hunbling

Peter N said...

I know why, Lyns, it's simple. You're an ANGEL. I might be wrong, but maybe not.
Have a great weekend. Peter