Go Eat Something!
“Go Eat Something!” That is what I usually say when the nagging begins. It never fails to happen mid-morning, mid-afternoon, dinner and snack time. The cries of “what is for lunch” and “I’m hungry”. Almost always, amidst these whines made from boredom, I will tell them to just “go eat something”. They trudge into the kitchen happily and return with an apple or a cookie and the situation has been averted for at least a little bit.
I take that phrase of “Go Eat Something” for granted. I use it with no thought behind it. I use it not realizing there are people who have to really think if there is anything in the cabinets before saying that. There are some people who can’t say those 3 words at all! How does that reality escape me? How does something as ordinary as eating get thrown by the way side?
Let’s start by looking at hunger. I believe there are three types of hunger that need to be addressed for someone to be “full”.
- Physical hunger. Wake up call people…..there are people putting kids to bed with rumbling and hungry bellies. Think of how cranky and tired you get when you are forced to eat dinner at 7 instead of 5:30. You thought you would die! How about that time you had to fast for blood work or surgery. You couldn’t wait to get to a drive through meal when you were done. Mouth watering, wallet open and ready for anything to stop the hunger! Every day adults and children are experiencing those exact feelings…..only with no drive through fix at the end!
- Societal Hunger. Hunger in its verb form is defined as “having a strong desire or craving for”. I believe that people who are struggling to provide basic needs such as food for themselves or family suffer in society as well. They have a “desire” and “craving” to be like the family next door. To take the occasional family outing to Ponderosa on payday, or serve a good meal to their family. They are hungry to fit in to what in their minds is normal and happy. They see this hunger as a curse and they don’t know how to fix it. All they know is that there isn’t enough food to last the week.
- Emotional hunger. This one gets me thinking. There are many people out there you may come in contact with on a daily basis that aren’t eating enough and you would never know it. They hide it well. It is an embarrasement to them. Possibly a sign that they are somehow failing. They don’t ask for help or let on that there is an issue. This causes an emotional hunger as well as a physical hunger. When you work so hard to mask an issue it causes an emotional emptiness for fear someone may find out the truth. You “crave” or “desire” to be emotionally whole and not need to walk around pretending or hiding, but what would people think?
We who have been blessed need to step up! We need to stop trying to logically solve everyones issues and just extend love, compassion and give of whatever we can. Safe places for people hurting and hungry are crucial as it gives people a chance to provide the basic need of feeding themselves or family. Places like Providence Ministries and other Food Pantry’s are crucial to “feeding” people on all 3 levels of hunger. Giving food is just one step, but in giving food you have given them some pride in society back and helped to fill in some emotional void. It works to make the person whole. Just with a bag of groceries. Who would have thought something so trivial to us as a bag of groceries could speak to someones hunger, emotions and sense of belonging?
What can you do? Can you donate food to your local food pantry? I get it….groceries are expensive. I can’t seem to make it out under $200.00. That is the point!!! If I even put 1 box of graham crackers for my son back (trust me, he isn’t lacking in snack food) and bought 2 cans of soup 1 can of tuna and 1 box of mac and cheese to donate, that would be 3 meals for a family and it didn’t cost much more than my box of crackers. We all can do a little. Let’s help others be able to say “Go Eat Something”….and mean it.