Finding a Character05 Feb 2016, Posted by Blog in
You know that feeling when you walk out of a movie theater after seeing an epic film and you feel a sense of purpose? Like I’ve just formed relationships with the amazing characters on screen and now I can change the world.
That’s one of my favorite feelings ever.
But we don’t have to go to the movies to feel so inspired. There are great people in my city; I see them walking down the street. And I can listen to their story.
Last week while filming for Mental Health America (MHA) of the Central Carolinas, I got to meet Jackie.
Jackie is a hard-working single mother of two. She has a wonderful laugh and a spirit of thankfulness.
But she’s had her share of heartache: homelessness, transitional living, losing her job because she put family first, and her mental health diagnosis.
I also met Angelia. She is Jackie’s family partner through MHA. Angelia was there for Jackie through the highs and lows of her heartache. Jackie met with teachers for Jackie’s kids when they struggled with school. She was there to celebrate Jackie’s birthday. She stayed on the phone with Jackie for 4 hours when depression was overwhelming her.
This relationship literally changed lives. Angelia helped Jackie buy her own house. Jackie said that her kids are smiling more often, and that they’re excited to have friends sleep over.
Jackie taught me to keep fighting through the struggle, and that progress is the best way to keep going. Angelia reminded me how to be a good friend and to always put others first.
Now watching movies is still one of my all time favorite things to do, but getting to know those around me inspires me to love.
Let’s be bold. Let’s step out and care about others. Let’s see the stories in our city.
“I wonder how many people I’ve looked at all my life and never seen.” – John Steinbeck