Paige Dickerson's Blog

Ten Dollars

Posted in Personal Musings by voteforjaneausten on April 22, 2011

What would you do with $10? I spent $10 on a pair of shorts, $10 on some food, $10 on gas (well more than that even), and a few other increments of $10 on other things last weekend. I usually don’t carry cash with me. I’ve gotten so used to my debit card that I typically rely on that, but I had some cash left over from something-or-other and was walking around Seattle this weekend. Somewhere in the vicinity of Pike Place Market I was in search of somewhere that would have some bottled water or a water fountain because I am constantly getting dehydrated.

At the corner of Pike and First streets there were about four people asking for money. I usually walk on by ignoring them all. There are simply too many. I want to give to them all. But often when you give to one, you get bombarded by many. But then there was this woman. She had to be younger than I was, and she had a little girl about 3-years-old. She was frantically trying to hold on to the child in the middle of the crowd and a lopsided sign that said “homeless mother” was tucked under her elbow. I don’t know why the picture touched me so much. I often see homeless kids and parents, but something about the pain in the woman’s eyes touched me. Sure, she could be spending most of her money on drugs. I do plenty of stories about people who do that and end up neglecting the needs of their kids. But I got out my wallet and handed her a $10 bill anyway.

She burst into tears and said it would go to a motel room for the night for her and her daughter. I nodded and made a small smile at the kid.

Part of me wanted to go back and take them some food also or ask them some questions or just do *something* but I guess I did all I could. I hope that they are OK. They seemed genuinely needy. It does make me count my own blessings in a way. I can’t seem to get them out of my head for some reason. I hope things work out for them.

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