A Humble to Stumble Upon.
Today I was humbled. It wasn’t any sort of day in particular where you or I would know that I could even find a moment to be humbled by. In fact, there was nothing too saccharine, conspicuous, or lavish about my behavior to where I would suspect that I could be humbled. I did not treat myself to a double-vente-soy-pumpkin-spice latte. I did not scream or get angrified (yes, I made that word up, and yes I will collect royalties if you use it) when I could not listen to music because I wasn’t allowed to download Adobe Flash. I didn’t curse at the sad, frozen meal that I had for lunch. I was pretty complacent with everything. Which is exactly why I was not expecting a humbling moment. I sort of thought the day would go about with my cool-as-a-cucumber outlook.
I’m not sure about you, but for me, when I get humbled, I usually have it coming to me. It typically occurs when I either have a woe-is-me attitude, and then I will see someone who is in a real pile of plight, and I will feel that sickening, nauseated feeling in the pit of my stomach because I know that I was being so petty. And the worst thing is that the person who really deserves to have the little violin playing for them–and justifiably so– he will not want it. He will find something to be grateful for about his terrible situation. Or, it will happen when I’m being a spoiled, little material-girl brat. Then I will come across someone who has never had a birthday cake in his thirteen years of life, and suddenly, that double-vente, blah,blah,blah latte starts to taste a little like humble pie.
But none of those scenarios happened today. Instead, I was doing work that made me feel good because it wasn’t about me; it was for a greater cause. And then I ran into two kids. They kind of scared me at first. I was located in a bad part of town, after all. They were dressed like they could do some real damage. But then they smiled. And any ounce of doubt I had was put to shame.
They were two, teenage boys that lived at the shelter I was at. The boys were coming back from school, and they were excited to share an idea with one of the development coordinators. It was an idea for a talent contest; one would rap, the other would sing. Other kids could do other things. And the best part–they could raise money to fund college.
One of the boys pulled out his report card. It was all A’s &B’s. You see, the kids at the shelter come from very troubled backgrounds. Some have lost parents. Some have parents who have lost them. Others have been exposed to drugs, gangs, and violence. But at this shelter, they can become the person that they want to be. So today, I saw that one of these kids, who came from one of those troubled pasts, wants to go to college. He was waiting all day to show the director that report card; I think he was waiting all day to make someone proud. He rapped for us, and I sort of felt like I was at a Pimp C concert (without the dirty language). His other friend that was there is top ten percent at his high school. They both came from a nightmare life, but they can now pursue their dreams.
I knew that there was a cause–to help kids. I saw the buildings that housed the children. I met the staff that did the work. I had heard the stories that filled the shelter. But when I saw the kids on this ordinary today, I was humbled.