Giving the Olive Branch of Hope

Nelson Mandela, champion of the anti-apartheid movement and former president of South Africa, died this month at the age of 95. He will be remembered for his commitment of the pursuit of racial equality and establishment of anti-poverty programs as well for his passionate belief in humanity.

Nelson Mandela for many exemplified the meaning of hope for humanity.

For so many of the clients I work with feeling hopeful is a key part of their long term healing process.

It is scary to feel sick every day and to honestly feel your body is failing you.  Feeling a lack of control of your health can be a form of post traumatic stress disorder.  I feel so fortunate that I stumbled upon the low FODMAP diet research as it hit the medical literature.  The low FODMAP diet, for so many of my clients and others around the world, has provided hope.  Hope that their ailing GI tract will one day be calm and reliable.

I find Nelson Mandela’s words inspirational and so fitting for all of us.  The importance of keeping optimistic and not giving up on yourself.  Always place one foot in front of the other and move ahead.

“I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one’s head pointed toward the sun, one’s feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.”

― Nelson MandelaLong Walk to Freedom: Autobiography of Nelson Mandela

Never give up.  Find your answers.  That is what I say almost every day to my clients with digestive distress.  Find the right doctor, ask questions, don’t take no for the answer (unless it makes sense),  become knowledgable and an advocate in your own digestive health.

We all fall down….and learn valuable lessons when we do.  ALWAYS look for your lesson.

“Do not judge me by my successes, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.”

― Nelson Mandela

Further reading on hope can be find here!

The holiday season, to me, is a time to offer hope to others that may need a little help finding it on their own. It might be making a treat for an elderly neighbor or sending an anonymous gift card to a family in financial need.

Two of my neighbors have spearheaded a gift of hope to our local Mother and Child shelter.  Local moms from my community  donate gifts-jewelry, gift cards, lotions and potions to the moms spending the holiday at the shelter.  These gifts are all packaged up and provided to the Moms as a token of love and hope.

My job is to make gift cards for the packages. Here is this years work in in progress

And completed…holiday card

We all have the ability to give the gift of hope and love.  Please share your favorite way to give the gift of hope by leaving a comment on the blog and you will be entered in a chance to win a gift bag of homemade (by me) gift  tags. tags

7 replies on “Giving the Olive Branch of Hope

  • Joanna

    What a lovely post, Kate! Beautiful and inspiring. This year, I started a tradition with my older daughter (age 4) who is now old enough to pick out gifts for kids in need. We brought the gifts to our temple for a big gift-collecting event before the gifts are sent to kids in need. I love teaching my children to give charity and to appreciate all that we have. At work, each year we have an Angel Tree where each employee can pick a tag (or several!) with someone’s gift wish written on it and then purchase the gift for them. It’s a fun way to give someone in need exactly what they want! We also donate holiday meals to a local charity. Happy holidays to all!

    • katescarlata

      Thanks Joanna, and so glad you shared all the wonderful and meaningful traditions you have incorporated into your life. It is so important to have our children see and take part in giving to those in need too.

  • Saskia

    I give the gift of hope everyday to my patients by listening to them, as doctors once did. This year I realized one reason I’ve struggled so much with my own health and going from doctor to doctor for answers (without getting any) is so that I could be compassionate with my own patients who suffer. I love what I do and I feel so privileged to help others.

    • katescarlata

      What a blessing Saskia to be able to share your compassion with others in the work you do. When you work in a field that allows you to share empathy and compassion it is important to save some compassion for yourself 🙂 ….which is easy for some of us to forget to do!

  • Karen

    What a great neighborhood project! I donate to, and work at, a food cupboard. It is both heart-breaking and heart-warming to meet and talk to people who are at their lowest but still so hopeful. I live in a typically suburban area and it blows my mind how many neighbors are struggling. (So if you’re reading this…..consider making a donation of food and/or money to YOUR local cupboard. It’s a year-round need! {sorry for the plug}). Happy Holidays!

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