Many of us are located in Northern California, where wildfires continue to rage and displacing thousands from their homes. Some have lost absolutely every possession. I’ve lived in the Bay Area since 1999 and have never felt or seen a natural disaster of this scope here.
From The Mercury News: “To put the size of the fire in perspective, the 182,000 acres is about 281 square miles. That’s nearly six times larger than San Francisco (about 47 square miles) and larger than San Jose (about 180 square miles) and Oakland (about 78 square miles) combined. According to the website, The Measure of Things, 281 square miles, the size of all of the fires, is:
4 times larger than Washington D.C.
7 times larger than Disney World
50 times larger than Los Angeles International Airport
200 times larger than Central Park in New York City
1,000 times larger than Disneyland”
Of course, others in the southern US, the Caribbean, and Puerto Rico have really been whammied lately, as well. My goodness, Mother Nature is strong, decisive, and completely impersonal with her actions and effects. We can all do our best planning, saving, protecting, but when disaster strikes, there it is. Immediately, not taking any excuses.
Resources – financial, material, emotional – have been on many of our minds this week. Nearly every conversation in the Bay Area starts with checking in on whether someone’s home has been affected, or their family or friends. Is everyone safe? Did they have to evacuate (yet)? Beyond the people, an inordinate amount of animals have also been rescued yet displaced.
Interestingly, there are both tremendous needs that people and animals have, who lost their homes and sometimes require medical care AND there has been so much outpouring of donations and volunteer time offered that many private requests will say, don’t post this on social media because we’ll get overwhelmed. I didn’t expect that. There are donation centers and temporary shelters that say, please, we now have more than enough supplies and volunteers.
Which leads to, “we need money. If anything, please send money”. Which is so powerful and fascinating. On a practical level, this access to convenience is part of the reason money was even invented. It’s representing value, but leaves open-ended what form that value will take once the money is exchanged.
I know it’s a luxury to wax philosophical when so many are at risk. Yet I’m learning to give these things space while I’m not personally in crisis, and I feel called to share the questions and thoughts with you, as well. Of course, it’s uncomfortable to think about, what if my house burned down? What if my car is destroyed? What if my family’s home burned down? Yet how powerful to take a moment, feel the scope of what is possible, and then see if there are any smart actions that can be taken in the meanwhile. (For myself or others.)
So much of the Divine message that I get in different ways, is to give from overflow. And only I know what counts as overflow for me. I believe it is a very personal decision, even when others can be eager to weigh in that someone must have overflow available (usually based on assumptions).
I urge you to take stock of your own situation and then give accordingly. That is heroic in its own way. Sometimes humanness has us hoard, close our heart, try to hold on so tight. Then other times humanness has us give to others in a way that exposes us to greater risk in the near or far future. What does your Divine Guidance tell you, in particular, at this very moment?
I am hoping this message finds you safe, wherever you are. I also hope it finds you clear…is your heart grateful right now for all that is in your life? Do the people whom you most love and appreciate, know that you feel that way about them? Are you hearing any repeated internal calls to help in your community or the world community at large, and have you taken action on that? Do you know anyone potentially affected by the fires, and have you checked on them?
Maybe you want to give money and that’s a good idea for you. Or maybe you want to give money and that is just not a good idea for you right now. Either way, offering connection is potentially invaluable. I offer this in that spirit. Please feel free to email me if you’d like to share your experience with natural disaster, want to pray together and send loving Light, or have specific requests that you’d like to pass on.
Here are some ways to donate, if you feel called to do so.
Monday – Friday, 9:30 am-5:30 pm, to be delivered to various shelters in need in the North Bay.
Our office address is: 359 Bel Marin Keys Blvd, #7, Novato
Here is a list of known things that are needed right now:
Baby: diapers, diaper wipes, sippy cups, bottles, pacifiers, formula, baby blankets, clothes, baby ibuprofen; Dog & cat food; Feminine products, Masks, face wash, washcloths, towels, sweatpants/yoga pants/sweatshirts; phone chargers, reading glasses, small suitcases/ duffel bags/ backpacks
Blue Dot Barn in Nicasio has now taken in 30 horses and 6 chickens from the fires in Napa/Sonoma. I have offered to collect money for the additional hay and chicken feed that is required to feed these animals while they are in our care. If you feel moved to do so, I know that any monetary donation would be greatly appreciated. The horses are also requiring an electrolyte mash as the smoke is hard for them to metabolize. Horses are actually very fragile animals and can become ill quickly. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me at: Lindalesem@gmail.com
If you’re able to come to The Hivery this week, please consider donating any of the following unused items to the relief bins at our front door:
New toothbrushes and toothpaste
Unopened boxes of feminine products
We are open Mon-Fri 8:30 am-6 pm and drop-off boxes are right at the front door. We are located at 38 Miller Ave on the second floor.
Of course, there aren’t adequate words of gratitude for those service people who are on the front lines. THANK YOU THANK YOU
I found this article interesting, about what taxes go to firefighting services: http://www.learnmoney.org/taxes/paying-for-government-services.html
And again I encourage you all to listen to your inner voice. Sometimes that knowledge is easiest to hear when crisis came close without hitting hard.