I Never Thanked Them

img_1003    Today I met a woman about my age.  She told me how many times her children thanked her for moving to America to give them opportunities they would not have had in their small town, which she characterized as small, unsafe, lots of guns, lots of drug dealers.  She raised five children here in America, all in college or college graduates.  And now it is her turn, she said, to go to school.

I was so bitter and angry growing up I never thanked my parents for anything, not even the now obvious sacrifices they made so we children could go to good schools.  I was too busy feeling like a victim to appreciate they sacrificed a lot–I didn’t see it at all.

As I walked in the woods this afternoon, I was full of regret.

Is it possible to thank the dead?

All I could think to do was embrace the beauty around me, the trees, wildflowers, gorgeous sky and say thank you, Mom and Dad, I wish I had thanked you while you were alive.

I hope my life itself and my embracing of literacy have shown my appreciation, but I doubt it.  I took it as my due while I tried to distance myself from my family, my neighborhood, and especially my father.

Thank you, Mom and Dad.  I wish I had told you that while you were alive.  While you were far from perfect and even destructive at times, I acknowledge you made big sacrifices so we could have a better life.

How I wish I had told them that while they were alive– thank you for the sacrifices you made so we could have a better life.  No, that’s not good enough.

Thank you for helping me have a good life.

For the Cost of a Postage Stamp (Thanks to L.J. Bailey–Reblogging)

woman-typing-writing-windows         Writers! You can use your writing voice to help kids. Thanks to Laura Jean Bailey for the information. Please consider writing. I am right now.

Laura Jean Bailey

We can make a difference in the life of children separated from their parents at the border. We are not powerless. Heartland Alliance in Chicago is currently caring for 66 immigrant children.

Demonstrate caring and compassion by sending a brief letter with a positive message to a child at Heartland Alliance, 208 South LaSalle, Chicago, IL 60604. The letters do not need to be in Spanish.

Check out @heartlandhelps’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/heartlandhelps/status/1014157505486868480?s=09

20180630_112433.jpg Protest sign at Families Belong Together rally in Chicago on June 30, 2018. Photo by L.J. Bailey.

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