I wish the inspiration for this post came from a life-altering revolution or a positive change in legislation, but sadly it comes from tragedy. Unspeakable, heartbreaking, can’t-wrap-our-heads-around-it tragedy.

I guess hope means something unique to me, but hope is the one word in this project that has a truly defining element of community. We all have our own hopes, but we all together hope for safety, for a happy ending, for a light in the middle of a ghastly dark night.

Hope means coming together when people need us. Hope means helping even when there’s nothing in it for us. Hope means believing doing these things and loving each other, and changing the laws, and taking care of those who have lost the most precious of things, can make a difference. Can make it okay again. Can make it better.

Hope means finding the light left on in the darkness by our neighbors, our loved ones, a total stranger. It means being there for the loved ones of the victims in today’s shootings, because god knows we’re going to need them to be there for us one day. And that’s okay. That’s how it’s supposed to be. Hope is a universal community of people who set aside their vast differences to hold someone’s hand.

Hope is hard to find, hard to give, but even harder to forget. Be someone’s hope, and don’t give up on your own. It’s out there, even in the blackest abyss.

If you’re struggling with how to be someone’s hope or how to find your own, here’s a simple list of how you can start. My friend Allison compiled it today, and I think it’s beautiful. It’s full of all the best kind of hope:

  • Hug your family and your friends
  • Offer words of love and support
  • Call your parents 
  • Donate blood  
  • Open up conversation about mental illness  
  • Donate to facilities or charities that care for the mentally ill
  • Pray, send good vibes, healing light, think good thoughts, say kind words
  • Do nice things for people going through hard times; bring them dinner, cut their grass, take their dog for a walk.
  • Be a beacon of love
I love all of you, today and always. Please remember that.

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