Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Friends in Need

I'm a big proponent of reaching out to others for the somewhat selfish goal of feeling good oneself, and for the altruistic goal of making someone else feel good.  I'm also a big proponent of killing two birds with one stone.  I have found the secret to happiness.  It lies with the spirit of giving and getting at the same time.

Yes, I have unmet needs, and there are times, when I feel especially shitty, when I seem to have nothing left to give anyone, not even to my own self.  These are very low days for me.  But I also have some reasonably okay days, too.  What I've discovered is that there are some things that I can give someone while I am able that can help me feel better on my worst days while also helping someone else at the same time.

Giving something to a friend in need is actually a gift to my future self!  It's a gift I can rely on to help keep me out of that low pit of pitifulness when things seem to be falling apart in every single way and then some.

Now, I'm not talking about giving millions to charity or buying someone a requisite* birthday gift.  (*I'll share my philosophy on gift-giving holidays in another post.)  The kinds of things I'm talking about are:
  • a laugh
  • a hug
  • a few minutes of kind understanding
  • a massage
  • an inexpensive but useful and appreciated physical item (like a journal)

So, this blog post is my gift to some of my fibro friends who really, really need right now: SarahBear & Coffeesister.

Sarah is young and has Fibromyalgia.  She's had this condition for years and is not getting appropriate treatment.  Anyone with Fibromyalgia knows how challenging it can be to stay motivated while in constant pain and exhausted (not to mention dealing with the myriad other symptoms that FM brings).  She lives in a remote area with no health insurance, and also has very limited funds.  But she's a go-getter and she has a plan.  She believes that a Fibromyalgia & Fatigue Centers, Inc. treatment center a few states away can help her significantly, if only she could raise enough money to travel there and pay for the treatments.  She knows it's not a cure, but it's better than the care she's getting now.

I believe it's a good plan, but it's one of those long shots.  She can't do this alone, so if you're reading this post and have a drawerful of change reserved for the vending machine, please consider giving just a buck or two to Sarah.  Here is the Facebook page describing her mission.  She has a PayPal account set up just for this goal and she is extremely grateful for any bit she gets.  She's also on Twitter if you're interested in following her tweets.

Coffeesister is the alias to a vibrant woman named Dorian.  As you can guess, she loves coffee...

...but she's also another victim of Fibromyalgia.  She and her honey are on a mission to move.  For most folks, moving is a bit of a pain in the ass, but it's not that big a deal.  It's a lot more challenging and complicated when you're broke and time is not on your side.  But I believe they can do it.  Dorian is creative and wise, and she's eking out usefulness from every idea and penny that comes her way.

Like Sarah, she's very grateful for all the love, whatever form it takes.  Again, if you can spare a couple bucks to help Dorian and Rhodester get to San Francisco, you will definitely be thanked profusely for it.  Here is their lovely PayPal account.  And here is Coffeesister's Twitter account.

Give your self some cheap love.  No, no - not like that!  Make a donation, or simply reach out to these wonderful people and share something personal and useful with them.  It does not have to be money (though they sure won't mind some) - even a kind word or two will do.  They both have blogs and every blogger loves getting supportive comments.  (EVERY blogger!  *wink, wink*)  They're both fine individuals and just need a bit of a boost.  Anything you can offer them now will go a long way toward keeping them afloat and will help you feel all warm and fuzzy inside at the same time.  Win-win!

I hope I've inspired you to look for opportunities to feel good about yourself and help someone when you can.

Thanks for reading.