Welcome! This site is an endeavor to spread an attitude of positive thinking and optimism. By searching for joy and beauty in all things - even the mundane, perhaps a smile will spread from my computer ... to you!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

"They're Not Heavy - They're Our Brothers...."

In a world suddenly filled with pictures of destruction, death, heart-break and loss, how can I possibly find something "positive" to write about?

The almost hourly reports coming out of Haiti today are staggering, to say the least. Each time I view new pictures on television of this country's devastation, my eyes are - for some reason - riveted to the screen in horror and sorrow for these broken people. I want to look away, but can't....perhaps it is because I'm in such disbelief of the sheer magnitude of this catastrophe.

The last report that I, personally, heard this afternoon on the local news was that the Red Cross had currently (at that moment) predicted the death toll to be "at least" 50,000. That was when I actually did start to cry....."at least?" At that moment, my heart (and my mind) just couldn't fathom the extent of the destruction, or the massive loss of life. I realize that it will be days, perhaps months before we know the actual number of lives lost in this travesty, but from today's reports it appears that the current predictions will not be far off. In the days to come, most of the world will be coping with these same feelings of disbelief...trying to come to "grips" with the reality of what the people of Haiti are facing....yet unable to even fully imagine what their world must be like.

How do we remain in a "positive" frame of mind when faced with life's largest sorrows? How do we continue to lead our own lives, while others are in such obvious need and pain? From an "armchair" observer of history's current events, I offer the following:

First, we grieve. Along with those brothers and sisters who are suffering...though we are not participants, we attempt to share in their pain, their loss, their grief.

Second, we ACT. We offer ourselves in the way(s) that each of us is most able....physically, financially, spiritually. Each of us is capable of offering at least one particular gift - for that is what makes us, as humans, unique and individuals. Already, medical personnel from the world over are beginning to volunteer their services to the thousands of injured in Haiti. The word is out - via the Internet, radio, television - that just a donation of $10.00 will be so valuable in relief efforts. And in every country, on each continent, people from every religion and spiritual persuasion have lifted their hearts and souls in prayer for the multitudes currently feeling so lost and hopeless.

Third,we focus. It can be so easy to loose ourselves in the grief and despair that comes with such loss. It can be easy, too, to complain and obsess with how or why things happen, or with what "doesn't" get done, or who didn't help, or who's "fault" it is. In order to make healing possible, in order to progress and move forward, we must focus on those things that are useful, positive, and constructive. While a host of negative and horrible situations will certainly come as a result of such calamities, it also gives us the opportunity to unite as a world community. Already, nations from the entire globe are generating aid - countries are working together to ensure that aid is generated and delivered. Sure enough - it won't be perfect, but it will be done! There will be amazing stories of heroism, compassion, friendship, and love. And after each recognition of grief, we will need to focus on today - the positive - and the future.
Fourth,we remember. "Rome wasn't built in a day." Such disasters aren't overcome or "fixed" over night. People living in such destitute conditions won't be in a new home within a week....those of us on the outside must continue to remember that the reconstruction, rehabilitation and renewal will be on-going. For years, most likely. Our obligation, as fellow inhabitants of this global community, is to continue "checking in" with those less fortunate, examining and reviewing their progress in healing - continuing to lend a hand when needed.

I certainly don't claim to have all the answers in such monumental moments of history...but I do know that history has shown what we are capable of in the face of such sadness.

While the news from Haiti is still so very raw and heart-wrenching, I remain confident and strong in my belief that the people of the United States - and the world - will unite in their efforts to comfort and help this small, and desperate country.

We are already on the move: to make a contribution, or obtain more information on Haiti relief efforts, you may visit one of the following websites:

*The U.S. State Department suggested making donations by text message: If you text HAITI to 90999, a $10 donation to the Red Cross will be charged to your cell phone bill.

*Red Cross online:

*William J. Clinton foundation:

*Americares: 1-800-486-HELP -or-

*American Jewish World Service: www.ajws.org/haitiearthquake

*Catholic Relief Services: 1-877-HELP-CRS -or-
These are just SOME of the nationally recognized organizations that are accepting donations for relief in Haiti. PLEASE be very prudent and careful in donating to unfamiliar organizations asking for monetary donations for Haiti - a few have already popped up, and are most likely fraudulent.
My heart is lifted in prayer for the people of Haiti.....and I also give thanks to God for the gift of living in a nation and world where we still recognize and act upon the needs of others.

The road is long
With many a winding turn
That leads us to who knows where
Who knows where

But I'm strong
Strong enough to carry him
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

So on we go
His welfare is of my concern
No burden is he to bear
We'll get there

For I know
He would not encumber me
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

If I'm laden at all
I'm laden with sadness
That every one's heart
Isn't filled with the gladness
Of love for one another

It's a long, long road
From which there is no return
While we're on the way to there
Why not share

And the load
Doesn't weigh me down at all
He ain't heavy he's my brother

He's my brother
He ain't heavy, he's my brother

He Ain't heavy....He's My Brother - by Bobby Scott & Bob Russell

Pay it forward - spread a smile!

Image courtesy of Google Images


  1. Pam,
    There needs to be more positive people like you in the world ; )
    Thank you for letting people know about the situation in Haiti, I was there in the
    early 80's and they were struggling and suffering then. It's sad that a disaster has to happen to waken the world's eyes to an area that needs major help and fixing. I think with the world's help they will be successful in turning things around there and making it a better place for those who have survived this tragedy. Are hearts are with all of Haitians during this tragic time.

  2. Beautiful post Pam and love the song/poem you posted. I have a very good friend from Haiti you just returned from there right before the earthquake hit, I wrote about it on my blog...I love what you write. Peace always, Kathy

  3. Pam, A gift is waiting for you over on my blog.

    Peace, Kathy


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