I grew up in Houston. I instantly speak Texan when I go back and yes, now and then I still listen to country music. My family and friends are safe after Hurricane Harvey failed to obey the state’s motto,”Don’t mess with Texas.” I’ve been both grateful and heartbroken as I watch the media reports of the tremendous suffering across our nation’s 4th largest city.
I‘ve struggled to find a meaningful response. In past disasters, much of what was done with the intention of helping (winter parkas to Rwanda–true story) simply creates a “second disaster” of mounds and mounds of clothing, blocking airport runways or rotting in fields. (1. Before you donate anything, take a look at the link below.)
So I’ve done nothing but check on those I love and watch in horror.
This past week, CBS Sunday Morning’s Steve Hartman, reminded me that Harvey pounded us all with perspective after what has been a divisive period in our nation’s psyche. But as he said in his story about the ordinary people turning up to help those who have lost everything, “Most Americans are heroes just waiting for their moment….When Mother Nature is at its worst, human nature is at its best.”(https://www.cbsnews.com/videos/when-human-nature-surmounts-mother-nature/)
It reminded me of many of my clients, for whom the hurricane of family dissolution has struck. I’ve observed moments when the hero shows up, when decisions were made that were hard for a parent but best for a child, when grace and forgiveness were extended, or when a hand was held out to someone who felt like they were drowning and had lost everything.
So I want to do something. Since cash seems to be the most helpful, this month, a portion of all earnings in our firm will be donated to the United Way of Greater Houston. It’s one small response. But I hope it helps the city that raised me.
Wishing you wisdom,