CHEROKEE COUNTY — Reading Daily Progress Reporter Jo Anne Embleton's story in today's B Section, I suddenly felt a connection to the Posada celebration.
And I think that is exactly what she is hoping others will feel too, no matter your ethnicity or religion.
I didn't know anything about Posada before I read Jo Anne's story, however I am always open to explore other culture's traditions.
One part, in particular, hit home with me.
"Through the posada experience, “you become one of the villagers, you (walk) with Mother Mary, knocking on doors and they reject you, and you feel it,” she added. “You're singing the songs (of the posada), but at the same time it helps put you in the shoes of the Holy family, and in a way, you (understand) the way they felt. And it helps you to become accommodating of people … if you feel rejected, maybe you won't reject somebody. And it makes you reflect on what has been does to others, and what has been done to you. And I think it makes you a better person ..."
For the past year-and-half, I have floated around without a permanent place to live. I took a hiatus from my journalism career in 2012 to pursue some writing and filmmaking projects. It was something I've always wanted to do, and I don't regret it.
However, after a while, I found myself penniless and constantly searching for my next guest room, couch or floor to stay in. A few times I drove all day just to get to my next place to stay.
I was always searching for shelter. I didn't like what I heard at a couple of doors, but mostly friends and family welcomed me with open arms. I cannot put into words how thankful I am to those people.
There was almost always room at the end for me ... always shelter ... always a home.
I was at everyone's mercy. This taught me to pay attention to those who are in need more.
So, now, I try to remember those nights I spent sleeping in my truck the few times I ran out of options. I try to acknowledge that anyone can be down on their luck. I try to let my friends and family know I am there if they need me.
Yesterday I officially received the key to my new home in Jacksonville. I have shelter. I have heat, lights and water. I am blessed.
Please remember those less fortunate than you, not only during the holidays, but every day. We all need a helping hand sometimes. Let's help each other survive in today's chaotic world.
Now, go read about Posada in our Livin Section!