Very few things fully capture my attention in the present. When it happens, it’s magical.
Not very long ago, I attended the symphony with my mother. And, as I watched her listen, I could see so obviously how intensely in-the-moment she was living. I was certain extraneous, worrisome thoughts weren’t clouding her mind. And, after, I told her that I found going to events with her rewarding (not just ‘cause I’m with my momma) because I could almost vicariously feel the present more deeply through her. Almost.
But, I don’t stick in the present. Maybe I’ll stick there for a moment but never much longer. When I’m out in the world, I’m almost always thinking about when I can return home. I find myself wishing really great experiences would hurry-up and end because I just want to be home where I’ll worry less.
More recently, we were at the symphony (again!) for our annual trip to its Christmas Festival, and I worried. I worried about the message I got during the symphony related to a work matter. I worried about the dogs. I worried about our home. I worried about the fact that I made an usher person tell the older couple sitting in our seats to move over to their actual seats.
So, the way I know which is my favorite musical piece, is by experiencing it without worry. This year, there was a guest baritone singer, and he sang, “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.” And, it consumed me. I sat forward in my seat. I swayed from side-to-side (wondering how everyone else could sit still in their seats). I tapped my feet. I probably hummed along. I clapped rapidly and loudly, and I think I even cheered. But, what I know for sure is that, for a few minutes, I lived in the present. And, it was magical.
It’s Giving Tuesday. I mean, if you know me and my career path at all, you know I think every day is a day for giving. I once had a financial adviser tell me to consider pulling back my nonprofit donations during this important time in my life when I should be paying down debt. NOT. A. CHANCE.
And, I like donating so much that I’m actually writing a blog to feature some organizations I’ll be supporting this Giving Tuesday. My approach to Giving Tuesday is usually to personally donate a small amount to four organizations that I am not currently supporting with a monthly donation. So, I’m going to feature those four organizations here (along with the organization for which I work – already a monthly donor there!) in hopes that you’ll either be moved to make a gift to one of these organizations or to one that is meaningful for you. Because nonprofit professionals are always working hard to create a more compassionate and caring world.
P.S. When I say “small” donation, I mean like, $5 each.
Giving Tuesday 2019
Midwest Innocence Project
I should be donating to MIP monthly. I have before and will again. It’s next on my list to add back into my monthly giving when I can. The folks at MIP work tirelessly in an ongoing fight for justice on behalf of prisoners wrongly convicted for a crime they did not commit.
Mom’s Demand Action – Missouri Chapter
OK, OK… given that I’m the one who built this chapter’s fundraising page, I should really be a monthly donor (Are you understanding yet why the financial advisor told me I have a giving problem?). This particular page supports Missouri and national efforts to provide gun violence prevention and gun safety education programs. Teaching a family how to safely store their guns can literally save the life of a curious child.
KC Pet Project
Be a Lifeline for Felines! As KC Pet Project prepares to move into its new home at the Kansas City Campus for Animal Care, the community cat program will be expanding. And, given that a new building brings new/more space, this Giving Tuesday campaign will help purchase incubators for an onsite kitten nursery. The allows the most critically teeny-tiny kittens to be treated more quickly as soon as they arrive.
Legal Aid of Western Missouri
I’m such a big fan of making legal advice and counsel available to all. Legal Aid attorneys also save lives, keep families in homes, serve veterans, protect domestic violence victims, and a ton more. Your gift helps ensure that folks have access to attorneys when they need it regardless of their ability to pay.
Serving Wyandotte County, Vibrant Health provides primary medical, dental, and behavioral health care to adults and children along with women’s care support. Its mission is to provide access to respectful, empowering, culturally sensitive and appropriate high-quality health care for the community, regardless of socio-economic obstacles.
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