As I think back on my childhood, I realize my mother kept so much from us. Working as a waitress, she struggled to keep a roof over our head, food on the table and the lights on. Family time meant sitting on her bed rolling the coins she received as tips so she could pay the bills or replace the clothes we rapidly outgrew. I never knew how much she shouldered until I became an adult with my own children. Even with a two household income, we struggled to pay the bills. Living from paycheck to paycheck, there were times we played race the check to the bank, or forget to sign the check so you have a few more days until payday. It was during that time that it really hit me, homelessness is not just a result of drug addiction, mental illness or even poor life choices. Homelessness can happen to anyone. A job loss, injury or illness can put us so far behind in our bills that we never catch up. Unless you have an agency like the Marion County Homeless Council there to help you when you fall. Imagine the sheer panic of receiving a three day notice to vacate your home, looking across the table at the children and wondering how you were going to provide food for them one more day? That server at your favorite restaurant, or the cashier at your local grocer's is not smiling today. Could it be because they are worrying about how they will make ends meet? That person sitting on the curb looking dirty and disheveled, could they be someone who has just come from a grueling physical job or someone that is without a home. Did you know many of our homeless actually work in the community. They work day labor, serve our meals at restaurants, cut our lawns or even may work in our medical offices. Homelessness is a complex and varied results of what has occurred in our lives. It can be a cumulation of ;bad choices or bad luck. There is not just one solution fits all when it comes to homelessness. For this reason, I ask that if your are reading this take a few minutes to do something kind for another human being. Pay for someone's meal, buy some cold water for the disheveled person sitting outside a business, look a stranger in the eye and say have a good day. Even small gestures, donations to non profits helping homeless or a kind word goes a long way for anyone struggling to find their way.