Sunday, April 18, 2010

Having Compassion and Making a Difference

I'm constantly amazed at the amount of little things that can be done in a day to make a difference. No matter where we go, what we do, each and everyone of us have the power within ourselves to make a huge difference right where we are. Be it with smiles, hugs, kinds words, written note, helping someone out etc, we all have the ability to create change. When you add compassion to it, you get something else entirely.


[kuhm-pash-uhn] - a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.

Everyone, on some level, feels sorrow for others who have been stricken by misfortune. When you have compassion, the desire to do something, to alleviate the pain and suffering, takes over and your heart must act upon it. There is no stopping it. The desire is so forceful and great that your heart is grieved because you feel like you can't alleviate the suffering. Then it hits you. You realize that while it may be true, you can't stop the suffering, you can't change things by yourself and you certainly can't do it alone, the fact is that you don't have to. There are so many people who have a strong desire to make a difference!

There is safety in numbers, right? Well, when the compassionate join forces and come together, there is STRENGTH, HOPE and MIRACLES are bound to be right around the corner. New Year Of Hope (NYOH) was started because of a strong desire to make a difference. Compassion. When you have compassion, you'll notice every little detail, every miracle and every act of joy causes floods of joy in your own heart!

There is no way I can ever thank those that have come together for NYOH, allowing me to experience the flood gates of joy on my soul when I delivered the HOPE that you provided. The behind the scenes work, the asking, the praying, the begging and the phone calls were amazing. So many people gave what they could to bring this miracle to pass. Those that couldn't give were instrumental in spreading the word about the need - and we could not have made it without you either! You truly made a difference by telling as many people as you could, as often as you could. My heart thanks all of you for your part in NYOH.

Here is how things unfolded. Stick with me. This is a long post, but worth the read!

Finally, it's here. The day we've been waiting for! Delivering HOPE to Roxboro NC. Dwayne is expecting me to come down and deliver the rent for 2009. My heart has been huge these past few months, as I know that I'm delivering so much more.

We finally arrive in Roxboro. Please keep in mind that Dwayne is only expecting me to come down with the 2009 rent that YOU supplied. We get there and the HUGS are wonderful. I give him 2 extra, one for @blogomomma and @cupcakes5 (hey, they needed for him to have a hug from them too!) He invites us in, but I get Diana and we get a "few" things from the back of my car. I have her close her eyes before she opens the car door and she is so surprised as she sees "all" the gifts that await her. We take 2 trips to carry them in and Dwayne is just as surprised. There is 3 or 4 different types of journals, photo album, cute pen, 5 rubber - extra long pencils, box of Magnetos (a magnetic building pieces of sorts), Operation, Monopoly, Connect4, Trouble, 8 different fingernail polishes, 2 heart makeup kits, 2 books, m&m's, big blue box of crayola crayons, markers and other art items, HUGE bag of school supplies, inlcuding 3 1 inch binders, 10 or more pocket folders, spiral notebooks, glue sticks, 24 pack of pencils, 12 pack of pens, pencil holder, erasers, and then a few of my favorite things - as you know I love giving my favorite things too. 2 pair of cute adorable socks, 3 packs of Reese Cups, and a Gorilla Webkin. (I do so adore monkeys) There is a video coming that shows her opening everything, so if I have forgotten anything, you'll get to see it. Dwayne is pretty speechless at this point. I'm ready to explode because my heart is flooded with emotions, knowing the last two items.

I hand him a card, that talks about how we knew he's been discouraged, but things will be looking up soon. I hand write a note at the bottom. It's his first huge surprise.

"The Hampton Inn of Myrtle Beach SC has Partnered with Spreading Joy Corporation to provide you a week at the beach free of charge!"

Immediately, tears of joy from someone who has had to keep getting up, over and over from being knocked down. He shows Diana and she is delighted as she has never been to the beach with her father. I do not have the certificates with me, but 3 restaurants in the area have graciously agreed to provide a gift certificate for their meals. My goal is to have enough certificates for their week of eating by the time he goes so that their meals are completely paid for.

We start discussing the box. HOPE. I saw the box a few months ago in Michaels and grabbed it, knowing I would put a single certificate in it. Hope - there is so much possibility there, especially when people with a heart for others from ALL OVER THE WORLD come together to make a difference. I hand him the box. My smile is a mile wide and my heart is on cloud 37 1/2 because I know what is waiting for him. I ask him to open it and read it out loud. He starts reading - There's Hope that hever ends - dwaynereaves certificate! (That link is a copy for you to see) He gets to the 3 rd line and hangs his head and more TEARS of JOY. FINALLY, my heart is screaming. HE KNOWS!! I give more hugs and take the certificate and read it out loud for the video. He is speechless as he has just read
"Spreading Joy Heroes from all over the world have graciously paid your rent through December 31, 2010"

He had no clue at all. Few people knew of this and we had kept it a secret from everyone. All of you who gave - YOU had no idea what you were giving to!! You thought you were helping a gentleman keep his apartment and pay his debt from last year. Look at what YOUR giving turned into.

  • 10 or 12 gifts, games and huge bag of back to school supplies and Reese Cups for Diana.

  • Week at the beach with meals included. (I have time to round the meals up - gonna make the calls and ask)

  • 2009-2010 RENT Taken care of Completely!

We talk, laugh and cry tears of joy and then, I must go and meet the man that helped make this possible - by trusting a girl that he had never talked to before, never met and had no idea if she would even come through on her promise. Ronnie - the landlord. Remember, I had called and asked him to allow me to raise funds for him with the help of @blogomomma from Chicago and he agreed to let Dwayne stay there in the apartment - even though we had no idea how long it would take to raise the funds needed to catch up on rent. I meet and of course HUG him and thank him from the bottom of my heart. He truly made a difference with the compassion that he had in his heart. The unique thing about Ronnie is - everytime I said thank you, he "gave" it back to me. What a giver! We presented Ronnie with a certificate as well. Such a small thing for his kind heart, but it comes from my heart and he understands that.

Many of you sent in your gifts with a heart felt sentiment "I wish I could do more". I love that your heart wants to give on a bigger level and even understand it, as does mine. Never apologize for giving what you can, and thank you for doing so! Many said, I can't give - you just don't understand, but I can email, tweet and ask others. Oh, after having my guy not work for half the year last year, I do understand! I also know how powerful one single voice can be! You never know who you will reach that has the means of making a difference! So thank you for your voice!

Thank you to @blogomomma who contacted me before Christmas and gave it a cool nifty name, started the ball rolling so that all I had to do was jump in and follow her lead. She did so much work and allowed me to experience complete joy as I delivered the gift that she worked hard to accomplish. I love you doll! You bless me.

Thank you to @cupcakes5 for your never ending voice, love and prayers and heart for others! My world is sweeter because you are in it!

Thank you to those who gave and would not allow us to add you to the list. You secret Spreading Joy heroes have a special place in my heart and I hope your heart is flooded with oceans of joy right now.

Thank you to everyone on this list -

that gave, tweeted and did what you could, with what you have. YOU are Spreading Joy! I hope your heart is soaring!

Thank you Ronnie, again - you are amazing!

Thank you Hampton Inn for providing a dream come true for a little girl and her father! You are fantabulous!

Thank you Marvin McAllister - my friend for allowing me to borrow your video camera. Maybe when Spreading Joy grows up a little more, I won't have to borrow it, but it is nice to know that you don't mind!

Thank you Steve Wikle for wrapping, riding along, videoing and putting up with the singing, giggling and all the "excited" talking the entire way up there. Thank you for being my biggest supporter in Spreading Joy. I love you.

(Shhh...don't tell anyone this is in this article - but ummmm - Have I forgotten anyone? - if so, pleeease do tell me so I can correct it!)

Here are the videos of all of the gifts being unwrapped as well as the "special gifts" that just made my day to deliver!! We could NOT have done this without YOU!

Thank you for allowing me this opportunity to deliver HOPE to Roxboro NC! Words can not express the gratitude that lies deep within my heart and soul for being able to make a difference. I know that Spreading Joy was only able to do this with YOUR help and I hope that you'll continue to partner with me, to do what we can, where we are, with what we have - so that we can - TOGETHER - Give BIG!

So, tell me. What do you think?

Did you ever imagine this? Do you see how your giving what you can, can restore hope? Oh...I truly hope so! I do.

***Dwayne tells his story as well as THANKS you for how you helped restore hope. Your heart should be flooded with unspeakable joy as you read how you made a difference in his life!***

{{{HUGS}}} Yall!


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