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Written By: Sasha K. Lotnikee
May 22, 2014
It's a one room house, the wooden floor creaking as people walk on it. There is one bed, the metal bed posts rusting, a child in rags pulling a wholly thin sheet, pulling it up to its chin. Across the room is a broken table, cracked pots and pans piled on it high. The window is dusty, and clothes are strewn everywhere. The mother sits at the edge of a plastic chair as I stare into her face. She's only half way through life, but the wrinkles on her face have gone deep. Her lips are dry, her skin smudged with dirt. Eyebrows curved down, staring into the distance. Then her eyes. They're brown and large, full of worry. No more joy- but wait! I see another thing. Fear? No, it's hope. Hope that the children that are on her shoulders will one day grow up in a richer community, with more opportunities.
The Great Depression is one time period that I wish I could visit. Yes, I wrote that correctly. The Great Depression. The woeful time period where everyone one was poor. Everyone is lost. Everyone is miserable. But there is always hope that someday, things will be better. Today, in our society, we take so many things for granted. For example, that bed you get to sleep on every night. Or school, no matter how much you despise it. It opens a door for opportunity; a chance to have a solid future. How about that broccoli and chicken on your dinner table? No matter how disgusting broccoli can get, I realize that I'm not eating stale bread, running out of water. Count your blessings. Really.
As I walk out of the house, I look down the street. There are tents down the field. I look back at the woman's house. She's actually quite lucky to live in a building that has a roof atop of her and her children. The dirt road is crowded with men, their clothes old and torn, their shoulders slumped down. I want to stay here half my life to experience the pain of loss and poverty. And hope. There's hope for the next generation. This is a hope not for a computer, for candy, or for a dress. This is hope for the next generation. This is beautiful.