The simplicity of The Human Impact’s message in building relationships with people who are homeless has a depth I did not expect when I started to volunteer. I have known Big Phil for almost 3 years. He calls me his little sis. Our friendship is authentic. We have tough discussions, share our joy, and share our sorrow.
Close to Home
The day Big Phil moved into his apartment was one of the highlights of the year for me and meant even more to him. There were many emotions for those of us that have gotten to witness this journey he has ventured into.
That same day I shared with him my son, Casey Edward, who would have been a little over 3 had he not passed shortly after birth. I remember telling him about Casey as we drove to Cowboy Chicken to share a celebratory meal for the big move. This was a little over 3 months ago.
A Healing Salve
Sharing with my friends on the street has been like a healing salve because they understand how this world can beat you up and that small genuine gestures can make a big difference. Along with all other big holidays, Mother’s Day is always a day of mixed emotions. I celebrate getting to be Casey’s mom and I grieve that he isn’t here. When people choose to wish me a Happy Mother’s Day through a text, card, voicemail, or face to face, their words hit me deep.
This year, I worked on Mother’s Day and it was a busy day. I missed a phone call from Big Phil and listened to the voicemail as I sat at my desk. He called to wish me a Happy Mother’s Day. As I type this, I still feel tears well up in my eyes just as they did as I listened to that beautiful message.
This is what it looks like when you put relationship building first. This is why The Human Impact is more than just a place I volunteer.