I’ve been to a lot of places and seen a ton of hurt. That said, it still is shocking when you see someone who has had everything ripped away from them in a moment. The look in a man’s face when he is simply trying to cope with his world being turned upside down, the smell of refrigerators without power, the palpable feeling of being punched in the stomach are enough to bring tears to the eyes of the hardest cynic.

Human experience is about surviving tough times. The way in which we help others who have been through those tough times says a lot about us. People an ocean away can bless you in ways you will never know until you put your feet on their dirt and your hand in theirs.

When I was presented with the opportunity to go to Australia, I felt that it was a foregone conclusion that I wouldn’t be able to go. I have only a few months left of graduate school before I am out in the real world, so I need to be preparing for that. However, the opportunity was too great and various things fell into place too perfectly for me to not go. I am still in the dream stage of preparing for this trip. I don’t think I will realize what I am doing until I get on the plane. I can not wait to see things under an Australian sky and do my part to make someone’s seemingly upside-down life a little bit better. Hopefully my helping hand brings some small amount of joy back into their lives. Disasters are sudden, and our response should be equally sudden.

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