After reading nasty comments about homeless people on the app Nextdoor, Dawn wrote the response below reminding people to be kind to their neighbors. Dawn and her husband, Mike, currently live in a tent near Los Angeles.
Imagine dinner with your loved ones. Everyone sitting around the dining room table eating Christmas dinner. You are all laughing and enjoying the time you all have together. Everyone on the room is so happy for the time they spend together. You all talk about what the new year could bring and what you wish it would. For a short time everyone is content and not worried about a thing.
Imagine waking up to many trees around you but none have lights or decorations. The only lights you see are the ones from a police car, ambulance or fire truck.
There is no dinner on a decorated table. There are no Christmas carols being played in the background. No gifts are being passed around because no one was able to afford them. Many are missing their families because their families are ashamed of them because of their living situation and lifestyle.
These same people all used to be happy and full of cheer and excitement. That was until events in their lives happened that displaced them. Not only physically but emotionally and mentally as well.
Displaced them to the point they are made to feel less than. Made to feel unworthy. The society they once lived in now deems them unfit and incompetent.
Look around your dinner table. Is the happiness in the room something that is felt more times during the year or just a day that brings lavish gifts? Are you happy with the piles of debt you have accrued just to please your superficial and undeserving families? Debt to purchase material things to show off to others so they can put you on a pedestal? Think about it for a while. Think about it until next Christmas.
Christmas is just another day to the homeless in your communities. Many of us never receive one gift from anyone. And to many, the fact that we even see another day is a gift in itself.
There is no aroma of desserts filling the air. The only aroma is tire rubber. Sometimes you can smell smoke from someone burning a fire to get warm. We worry everyday about numerous things. We want to not be shined down on.
None of you know our stories or circumstances that got us here. Maybe you should take the time to learn. Maybe next Christmas you should choose one of your homeless neighbors to get to know.
Gifts are not necessary but if you feel the need, gloves and socks are greatly needed and will be appreciated tremendously. It will be the best 5 bucks you could spend on a gift. Don’t worry about the wrapping paper though.
Those families with children, maybe you will start a new family tradition at Christmas. One that your children will want to pass on to theirs and so on.
Please remember the less fortunate this Christmas. We may live life differently than most but we are still human. And we are and will always be someone’s neighbor.
Merry Christmas from my family to yours. Be safe and God Bless us all!