Sistah Take A Seat

Sistah Take A Seat: Don’t Do It For The Likes 

I don’t know when I decided that when people shared information with me that I just couldn’t keep it to myself. Maybe it was while growing up and seeing an entire immigrant community of people being deprived of basic rights while their immigrant peers from other countries got the first pickings. Maybe it was when I sat in my college counselor’s office and received all the college applications for free; while my classmates walked around clueless. Maybe it was having a college roommate whose parents bought everything she needed while I had to run to the dollar store for a frying pan that peeled metal after one week’s use. 

You get to a place where you say “When I … I will … for people who…” So when you get there. You do your part. You pay it forward. You do right by humanity. 

I have been guilty of overcommunicating. I have been accused of over-emailing and secretly maligned for over-posting. “If she sends out one more thing today,” they say. I’m sure they wonder what’s in it for me. I’m sure they are convinced that I get some type of commission. I laugh, mutter some not so nice thing under my breath (keeping it real) and continue being me. 

What’s in it for me?

My commission is seeing a fellow entrepreneur get her small business training certificate. Making room for others to come behind them. My bonus is hearing that a colleague jumped on that job opportunity and nailed it. Being a contributing member of society. My raise comes when parents taking advantage of free community activities with their kiddos. Making memories for years to come. I can’t tell you how much considering others before self tends to keep you humble. I mean, who doesn’t like to pass along info? I guess there are some grinches out there. Phooey to them! And they wonder why they can’t get off the ground with their goals. Smirk. God don’t like ugly and He ain’t too fond of pretty either. 

I think of the God-sent angels who guided me in my youth when my parents didn’t have a clue on how to navigate the education system. To the counselors who placed me in the coolest after school extra-curricular activities. My parents didn’t work for government offices, didn’t come from legacy, didn’t have access to the resources never mind could they afford to pay for it. To mentors who have groomed me over the years to simply walk through doors that Haitian girls weren’t expected to enter. So when people start bad mouthing public education, I’m ready to flatten tires and key cars! And give ZERO cares! Oh … wrong blog. Never mind! 

*Red Haze Lifting*

I don’t do it for the likes. If it were the case, my train of goodwill would have screeched to a loud halt years ago. People can be ungrateful. They can be mean. Darn right mean. And the most hard core person can be affected every now and then. The sheer waves of mean spiritedness can bog a person down. Yet God reminds us His eternal rewards surpasses what man will ever do or say on your behalf. That He will confound the wise and leave others continually perplexed about the favor on your life. Christ reminds his believers that if they could place him on a donkey and herald him as the next King then turn around and malign him on the cross-well heck don’t expect any less from the world we live in. But you carry on. You press forward. You do what is right before His eyes. 

When you do it for the passion, the purpose or simply because your rent on earth is a bill that will always come due, you will find plenty of opportunities to be a blessing to others. Where your right hand will never know what the left hand is doing. 

“Let us not become weary in doing good.” Galatians 6:9

Don’t do for the likes. Do it for the love. 

Random Thoughts

Paying Rent

I don’t remember the name of the kind soul who thought it her duty as a teacher to donate her daughter’s hand me downs to me during my fifth grade summer school year. She was my typing teacher. I’m sure my studious nature and quiet demeanor won over her affections. I was a scrawny girl, still speaking with a weird, misplaced Caribbean accent. I was painfully shy and my clothes may have hinted at being somewhat worn. They were carry overs from a better season in my life. Times were suddenly hard and forward fashion was at the bottom of my mama’s list.

Being in the field of education and social work, exposes me to the many needs of young people. The average child bears many a burden. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs barely tells the tale of children who go from meal to meal and pillar to post. I hosted an annual winter coat drive each year at my former school. Boys would show up in their older sister’s pink hoodie sweater. No shame in their game, just trying to stay warm on a brisk Miami “winter” day. God bless the donors who paid it forward and blessed an unknown youth with a sweater that was gender friendly, lol!

I wonder if those donors, like myself, had come across a kind soul in their past. A stranger to them who sensed a need and brought a box full of gently worn items that were lovingly washed and re-gifted. There’s a famous quote that says service is the rent we pay for our stay on earth. Thank you to those who paid your mortgage ten times over in quiet service through your giving. The recipient may never cross paths with you in this life time. Just know that it was enough to know that someone out there somewhere cared.