this week a bunch of my friends (along with many many others all around the world) have given up their usual menu plan to live off NZD$2.25 a day and "live below the line".
the idea in a nutshell seems simple enough:
- spend 5 days experiencing the diet of so many hundreds of thousands of people around the world who live below the poverty line.
- raise money for worthy charities that are doing their best to do something about that line.
and in doing so bring awareness about how blessed we are and to challenge both our thoughts and actions for the future surrounding injustice in the world.
i will be honest and say that i thought about joining in this year - for about a milli-second. but i didn't do it. why?
it's not because of the food. i know i can give up food luxuries. i've been dairy-free for over a month now (not because i want to be, but because my son *potentially* needs me to be). and my favourite food is cheese. it's hard work. i thought maybe after a month it would have become easier. alas, no.
instead, it's entirely because of the exhaustion that i chose not to sign up. i remember reading comments from people who did it last year - that you feel tired. really tired. REALLY tired. and i just don't know if i can add any more tiredness onto my already fairly saturated tiredness week (think 6 month old who breastfeeds around the clock every two hours and 2 year old that... well is a 2 year old).
yet here we are at the end of the week and some of my friends who have taken up the challenge are parents. and some of the mums are even still breast-feeding. i have been astounded by their resourcefulness and recipes. i have been astounded at their willingness and dedication. but most of all i have been astounded at the community that has developed.
yes - i may not have experienced hunger and even more tiredness than usual this week. but i have experienced the strength that comes when we support each other publically, gather around each other with compassion, and listen to each other as we share deeper thoughts than we normally would.
this week i have watched - and seen. i have listened - and heard. i have hoped - and believed.
if you would like to donate - here are my friends and here is the organisation that we are supporting.