In the wake of the devastating Haiti earthquake, Her Every Cent Counts blogged about being torn between a desire to help others, and to ‘get ahead’ in the traditional First World sense. I found myself nodding at every single word. I couldn’t have written it better myself. I mean, I’m struggling to build a career, to start saving, to do all the things I want to do in life. I want to get married, to travel, to have kids. And yet there are millions of people around the world who will never get to experience any of this. Some of them won’t have a future. Some of them can’t even imagine anything like it, who don’t have a tenth of what I have. People who sometimes make me think, f*** it, maybe I should drop everything and go dedicate my life to working with them and helping them. Maybe I should donate everything I own to a cause. Maybe I should devote myself to doing good for others.
Thinking about it simply makes me feel absolutely hopeless. What can I really do, in the big scheme? What can I give that’s going to make a difference? What is wrong with human nature and why do we insist on torturing and destroying others just like us? How can we repair and rebuild downtrodden villages, cities, countries, and change the lives of men, women and children who have so little and have been through so much? How can we create meaningful change and stop atrocities like these in the Congo (I cried as I read this – what they have gone through is absolutely unspeakable).
But doing something is better than doing nothing at all; that’s what I tell myself, and I hope you feel the same.