a privilege

Some nights I can’t sleep because I ate too much cheese before bed and sometimes it’s because I just lay there crushed by the weight of my own privilege, and what I’m doing with it to help others. I then spiral a bit about how unproductive guilt itself is. The other night my spiral was triggered by this harrowing and gorgeous NYTIMES photo essay about Venezuelan immigrants making a deadly trek through the jungle in the hopes of getting US citizenship, many of them with babies and toddlers. I lay there in my big, soft, safe bed, in the house that I own, sick with guilt, wondering why God has blessed me more than others. But then I realized that there was something incredibly arrogant, presumptuous and backwards about my assumption that anyone who has less than me is any less happy than I am. Maybe they are even happier, more grateful, more at peace, than I could ever be. Not that these immigrants wouldn’t give limbs for a home, and some are, but who am I decide that my life is better than theirs, because what is ‘better?’ All of this to say, if you share any of these feelings, in these times I like to do one my of my favorite forms of emotional cardio and purchase things from wishlists on Miry’s list, an LA based charity that helps settle refugee families in new homes. From the comfort of your privilege that you somewhat earned, but also was handed to you before birth, inherited like a box of Christmas ornaments, you can send a crockpot, or some clothes, or some chairs. It’s not presuming what a family might need, it’s giving them what they’ve asked for. It’s something.

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