A young man from the midwest sent me a message through a contact form.
“Do you give away free books?” While I have, it’s usually in person at events. Buying my own books and then shipping them gets costly after about a hundred of them.
My friend Virginia Y sent him a copy of Diary of a Broken Mind.
But that got me to thinking
“I wonder how many would be willing to buy a book for someone in need–people who want one but are short of money right now, especially in an economic crisis caused by COVID-19, and can’t make that purchase.”
I reached out to you guys and the response was (and still has been) overwhelming. You donated over a thousand dollars. I’ve been logging numbers, names, and messages on spreadsheets to keep up with it all.
When I sent out the email and posted asking who might want one who doesn’t have the funds at the moment, I expected maybe eight responses. So far, I’ve had 50 requests and I mailed 25 today and will mail the remainder over the next few days. Books to Nebraska, Ohio, Texas, Minnesota, Wyoming, and more. Ebooks to India, Canada, South Africa, and Scotland (I can only do this through Amazon gift cards from that country’s amazon.)
Those who asked for a book are moms, dads, veterans, teachers, counselors, nonprofit staff members, sisters, brothers, survivors of overdose, trauma, and suicide loss. People who struggle with mental illness, thoughts of suicide, eating disorders, and addiction. Many shared their own story and I read all of them. More than once. Here is just one of them.
“Thank you for this great offer. In these times it is nice to see someone willing to give help.”
Charles used to share his notebooks and his words in groups
People identified with his words and to date, I still have people reach out and tell me how much this meant to them and how they’ll never forget him. Those words were important to include in the book to show his perspective and how he felt as penned our family story. While it looks like a book, it’s so much more. My soul and my son’s soul are between those book covers.
Members here sent a gift to those in current financial difficulty
I won’t lie. As I printed out labels and mailed packages, I thought about how kind and thoughtful this tribe is. How giving and loving and how much you want to help, I was crying tears of gratefulness.
It’s just this small little thing but in the midst of this crisis, it gave me such hope. From me, thank you. And from all who will receive a book, they thank you, too. If I left you out, please let me know.
EK for DJ and Alex
Dawn G in memory of Sean Gallagher
Byly von C