Author: Amy Magallanes, Public Affairs Volunteer
I am a career parent, which is to say the last 20 years, of my 40 on earth, have been spent pouring the best parts of myself into 4 wonderful humans. As the first of the 4 developed her wings and left for college; I was realizing the magnitude of being transplanted from one thing to another. For half my life, I have given. Time. Care. Hugs. Compassion. Kindness. Patience. As one by one my children will surely fly the coop; Even surer, is my capacity to give.
As a public affairs volunteer, Red Cross allows me the opportunity to listen. In every story I tell, I find my own. In relating the details, I find the courage and heart each individual, or volunteer possess. I add it to my own ever growing heart.
Volunteering at Red Cross ,may be holding space for a stranger, or your neighbor, but it is also holding space for yourself. Red Cross needs volunteers to pour life into humanity. Volunteers, like me, need Red Cross to pour meaning into the words I write; or significance into the photos I capture. It builds a bridge over the gap the changes in my own life have created. It allows me to witness, first hand, the best parts of humanity. It also connects me to other people who share the same idea; that giving of yourself with time, resource or compassion fills spaces that expand on who we are. It allows me to give to something larger than myself, while developing new friendships and bonds.
Red Cross grants me a platform in which to reflect a little bit of myself onto those who need it. Sometimes it’s your neighbor, sometimes a stranger. Or even your own family. Be a mirror. With a smile. A hug. A meal. Your time. The Red Cross reminds me, much like parenting does, you get back far more than what you put in.