Making a Difference

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Making a Difference

I told you I was going to write about transition for the next few weeks. I have some topics outlined and tried to write but couldn’t focus given the news this week. Everything I wrote was flat. I needed to take care of myself by writing my way out of this funky mood. I will share the results with you now and will get back to transitions next week. I hope that you are doing well and have found ways to care for yourself. 

When News is Overwhelming

The images and stories in the news can be the stuff of nightmares. Thoughts and prayers do not suffice. How do I make a difference? I want to DO something. I want to teleport to that place and ….. well, I don’t know. I imagine myself standing at the scene and realize I still don’t know what to do. I struggle to focus on my day. I want to shut down, get mad, and cry all at the same time. The phrase, “how do I make a difference?” runs through my head over and over.  

How DO I make a difference? The way out of my overwhelm is to realize that it isn’t just me. You are out there caring and working for positive change. I don’t know all of you, but I know some of you, and this is a quick list of what I know about you, my readers:  

    • You show up on people’s worst days with compassion and skills. 
    • You guide people and communities to be their better selves. 
    • You provide therapy for people of all ages. 
    • You focus on safety, health, community and care. 
    • You work to change laws to better serve children and families.  
    • You advocate for the LGBTQ+ community, work for diversity, equity, and inclusion for all, and support justice for people whose journey is different from your own. 
    • You pray and deliver meals; you operate food pantries. 
    • You host Thanksgiving dinners for youth in foster care and advocate for their needs the rest of the year. 
    • And so much more. 

We Make a Difference

We make a difference together and we stay resilient together. I will keep helping people to be resilient, I will continue to teach about mental wellness and trauma informed care, I will keep volunteering. I can also gather supplies for your efforts, show up to rallies you plan, and share resources and information.  

We are making a difference and we expand our reach by supporting one another. The news doesn’t share our success stories. The young mom who establishes a safe, caring home for herself and her children. The angry person who feels heard and settles down. The desperate teen who connects with a group that values them just as they are. The people who are fed, literally and figuratively. Your untold stories of making a difference are as real and vibrant as the bad news.  

Thank you for all the ways you make a difference and for all the ways you support one another. I will use today’s news as a reason to get up and keep going in all the ways I can. Thank you for your part in this. 


Laura A. Gaines

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