Christmas can be a difficult time of year for many families.
And for many parents of disabled children it is a massive reminder of the things your child is not doing. All those “age appropriate toys” on the shelves sting the heart of the mother who has just purchased toddler toys for her 10 year old.
But we are still very fortunate, despite our difficulties, and sometimes, the best medicine for our own sadness is to bring joy to somebody else.
I have many wonderful friends who are constantly doing things to improve the lives of others and came across the Homeless Shoebox Appeal through them.
Adam likes to make other people happy and he was very keen to choose things to put in the box. We discussed how things which we would think of as purely practical items, like shampoo or a comb, might be seen as a real treat to person who has very little.
We bought several pairs of warm socks, a hat, gloves, toothpaste, toothbrush, nice showergel, a torch and a lot of treats. Traditional Christmas treats, those things we often only enjoy at Christmas seemed to matter. Many of us have childhood memories of Matchmakers, chocolate oranges, fun sized treats and candy canes and we wanted to put some of those in.
Topped off with a Christmas card and some Christmas wrapping paper we delivered it to one of the amazing people who is doing so much to make life better so many.
If you want to help out, join the Facebook group for the Homeless Shoebox Appeal for the South West.
Many of the collection points are taking donations up till December 19th so there is still time to make a difference. If you cannot manage to do a whole box they are keen to take donations of items which can be placed in the boxes.
We cannot magically make things better but I hope that someone will open that box this Christmas and feel that somebody cared.
We all need to feel that.