The older I get, the less opinionated I become. Many blogs are opinions or reflections or observations on important aspects of life. And so, because of this, I have thought that maybe I don’t have much to offer the blogging world.
I have to admit that I just now, for the first time, read a CNN article about what happened last week. I just now took a look at Obama’s speech. Why did I take so long to read the articles published about it? Because I knew it would leave me with the familiar paralyzed, empty feeling, with no resolution.
I know now exactly what I can offer through the work of doma. Some resolution. Some redemption. Some hope. True stories of hope and healing as we see lives transformed every day. Hope packaged with: Authenticity… A glimpse into the struggle…And a silver lining. Not an answer to the complex questions raised last week, but checkpoints along the way as we strive to address realities and challenges within our humanity.
So in response to that feeling of ‘no resolution’, I just now decided to open up to you all and be vulnerable about the very hard work we do at doma as we fight against human trafficking, or modern-day slavery. Girls and women from the United States who were tricked or forced into prostitution from an average age of 13 in Ohio.
Working in Anti-Human Trafficking every day is hard work. Just this week, along with Connecticut, here are the things that crossed my desk from Columbus alone… one city: A survivor in her 30’s died today; A survivor in her 20’s went missing 3 days ago; Two teenaged girls were reported missing 7 days ago, last seen with a young man reported to be involved in a Columbus area with high trafficking (see picture below).
So what do I have to offer?
Authenticity. I’m going to be super honest with everyone right now and ask you to look at our world dead in the eye and take on the evil. This is our world, folks. This is our nation. These are our kids. These are our teens. These are our adults. These are our families. And it most definitely is up to us to do something about it. Together. To invest and not forget. To align our calendars and pocketbooks to our inner priorities. To shift and prioritize our innate values:
Peace and harmony.
A life well lived.
Bringing out the best in those around us.
Working our tails off to be able to say that we did everything we could to promote health and life– and to fight against injustice.
Consider investing in the learning curve so that you don’t feel paralyzed, overwhelmed, disheartened. Glimpse into the struggle and turn toward the silver lining.
The homework I’m giving myself is to get a blog plan in place for the new year. Yes, all because of Connecticut.
At doma, we try not to focus on the horror, because we all have hundreds of horrific images floating around in our heads from newspaper clippings and the realities of the pain in our world. Believe me, I’ve sat through countless human trafficking and orphan care presentations that are gratuitous…without the hope. Sure, they tug on emotional heart strings, and sometimes borderline manipulate people into donating or caring temporarily. We won’t do that to you. We want you to know just enough of the reality and the struggle to be motivated toward a true shift in values.
Along the way, I’ll give you some homework assignments, offer up forums for discussion, share doma’s authentic stories of hope… and look for some hopeful stories from you. We want you to share in our joys, and invite you into our home. I’ll share hard lessons learned along the way, funny stories about what happened today (we laugh a lot!), and maybe even throw in a few anecdotes from home life. How does our core doma team balance having 15 collective kids, one newborn grandbaby, two pregnancies, 5 dogs, 4 cats, and an unidentified critter (…long story about my Christmas tree this year…)… ??
And I promise I’ll always end on a high note. (Seinfeld reference, anyone?) We need to hear more of the high notes.
Your homework this week should take 5 1/2 to 8 1/2 minutes, in order of priority:
1) Take 2.5 minutes below to meet Vanessa, a doma teammate and survivor, as she shares what the word freedom means to her;
2) Take one second to view the pictures of the two missing girls in Columbus; (and maybe take another second to offer up prayers and positive thoughts);
3) Take 3.5 minutes to view our indiegogo campaign here and hear one way we fight trafficking at doma (since you have only 10 days left to get a free sandwich);
4) Take one second to subscribe to my weekly or bi-weekly blog over to your right and subscribe to the monthly or quarterly doma newsletters here. (USA for Anti-Trafficking news and volunteer updates); and
5) Leave a comment!
Peace and Harmony to all,