Gelato, Babies Found in the Rubble and My SUV
by Jessica Ehlers, June 4, 2010
A few weeks ago, we went out to celebrate the use and proper function of underpants. It has been a long haul and we're not completely out of the woods yet, but things were going well and a celebration was in order. See below for some very cute photos of the little man enjoying his chocolate Gelato courtesy of the Mendo Bistro.
I have had a lot on my mind in addition to potty training. A friend had just returned from Haiti. She is a pediatric nurse and was a part of a group of volunteers running a clinic. She had two specific stories that stuck with me. The first was of the baby girl they nursed back to health who had been found in a pile of rubble. That is, concrete and steel and who-knows-what. A baby. In rubble. That lived. An aunt had been found who was available to raise the baby, though the parents had not survived the earthquake. That was but one story.
The other story is of the interpreter who worked at the clinic my friend was a part of. I do not know his name but he had been a student at a University that no longer exists. He had a quick-study in English and presently works as an interpreter for one meal a day.
Then there is the whole oil spewing into the Gulf thing. It is terrible and it is all I can do not to tear all my hair out and mail it south, in hopes it would help some.
I admit I drive an SUV. I am not proud of it. It was a gift from my parents-in-law while I was married and my awesome microscopic Honda Civic was on the fritz. Back when we were paying for oil in the amount it is priced at in some countries, I would jokingly ask the person behind the counter if they were offering free Vaseline with the cost of that gas. Mostly I got blank stares from the 20-something-aged gas station attendants.
I know it isn't funny. I know we still pay a fraction of what gas is worth. And yet, I still drive my SUV. Maybe this year I will be able to trade it in for something less impacting on the environment. But it isn't like I can afford a new car. Shit, I am a single mom. On welfare to boot. Poor me, right? Don't worry, I am not sitting around feeling sorry for myself. I am too busy watching this miracle I get to herd into adulthood. And counting my blessings. Every one of them.