Sometimes, I just wonder how people can do it.
Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Pierre Garcon’s outward focus may be on this Sunday’s AFC Championship Game against the New York Jets, but we know where his heart will be – with his relatives in Haiti, relatives he has yet to hear from in the wake of the January 12th earthquake that crumbled Port-au-Prince and surrounding regions.
I can understand how one can dive headlong into work in the face of grief. Having dealt with the loss of a dear relative late last year, my work was the perfect refuge. It gave me something to concentrate on so I wouldn’t have to deal with the sadness and pain of losing my uncle. I know I’m not alone in using work as a coping mechanism. But I cannot even begin to imagine the heartache and uncertainty that comes with such an immense act of destruction, dealing with the thought that your loved ones are missing, that fear of the unknown. Whatever victory Pierre may achieve this weekend, we know it will be bittersweet.
It is for this reason that my heart also breaks for Samuel Dalembert of the Philadelphia 76ers, who recently traveled to his homeland to witness the devastation. You can read his story here and here. But again I ask, how do you find the strength to get back on the court and play? The answer, of course, is that this is how Samuel deals with the pain.
Pierre and Samuel are not alone. Thousands of people, not nearly as prolific, are worried sick about their loved ones in Haiti, or mourning their loss. Our thoughts are with them.
Telethons to raise funds for emergency relief will air on national networks in both Canada and the United States tonight. If you miss them, you can still support these efforts in a number of ways:
- American Red Cross/Canadian Red Cross
- Médecins sans frontières/Doctors Without Borders
- the Samuel Dalembert Foundation
- WorldVision Canada
Please do what you can. Thanks.