Tuesday, September 27, 2005

It's hard to get good help these days.

To the American Red Cross volunteer on the phone yesterday;

Truly, I understand how many calls you must be receiving and the stories you must be hearing daily. The aggravation of a job for which you are not even being paid. How difficult it must be to sit there hour after hour trying to help people. And then when it's all over, go back to your home, sit on your couch and watch your tv and then after taking a shower in your bathroom, getting into your bed only to sleep a few hours before you have to get up to do it all over again the next day.

Yes, it must be horrible. To have a home to go to. To have a tv to watch. To have your own bathroom, your own bed, even your own nightgown. Gosh, I can't even imagine what it would be like to sleep a few hours straight.

You see, I don't have a home. I don't have my own bed or tv. And in three days I won't even have a place to sleep at night. I'm scrambling to find something for me and my daughter and in the meantime spending hours after hours dialing the phone number of the American Red Cross to get help. That's what you are there for, right?

Help others? Help me? I'm as surprised as you are that I need financial help. But now I'm a two-time evacuee. With even less to my name than I had just a week ago. I really have no idea where I'm staying at the moment. And when you asked for the phone number - I really had to scramble to find it. People nowadays don't have the number printed on their house phones. I finally remembered that it was written on the map with the directions in my car. I tried my best to get it as quickly as possible but apparently even my best wasn't good enough for you.

You lectured me. You fussed at me for keeping you holding for so long while I looked. You are very busy, you told me. You have lots of people to help. You can't sit on the phone like this. But here's the thing - I am one of those people. I need help too. Just as desperately as the rest of them. And I sat for hours dialing the American Red Cross number over and over, for what? To be berated because I didn't know the phone number of where I am sitting? To be lectured because I'm taking up your valuable time?

Ms. Red Cross Volunteer, I understand completely the enormity of your job. But the difference is - this is my life. The whole situation is even more overwhelming to me. I would like you to remember that a little patience, a little compassion and a little understanding of what I'm going through would go a long way.

Thank you and have a nice day.


  • At 7:45 AM, Blogger shrimpfriedrice said…

    I am so sorry. With all that you have had to endure, a volunteer with an attitude problem must suck. Be strong . . .

  • At 9:04 AM, Blogger Big Dipper said…

    Well said.. That Red Cross Worker should consider a career change.

    I do hope your life gets back to some sort of normality soon


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