in one week.
My heart races just thinking about it. Nervous, excited, happy, sad, confused, but most of all..grateful. There is a God who loves me, and will take care of me.
I find so much comfort and peace in that alone.
Last fall I fell in love with a little orphanage ontop of a mountain.
And my heart has been there ever since.
It was a beautiful, almost timeless drive up there. Normally when I’m driving somewhere here in the states I cannot help but think to myslef ‘am I there yet?’
No. not this drive. It was like the small space between space and time. It wasnt really anything. I didnt feel like I wanted it to end. But of course I could barely remember that it even begun.
The drive was up and around and down and through. There were all kinds of weird and funky jungle trees and animals and noises that were so unfamiliar but they all sounded like home.
It was a long road with no turns but windy roads with plush green growing around us, reaching above the road. It was picturesque, as if the trees were yearning for eachother, trying to hold hands. It made me smile. The kind of smile that isnt forced, y’know, the smile that surprises you because you werent expecting it. A real smile.
I couldnt tell you how long it took to get up there because I really do not know. It didnt feel like it took any time. Y’know, I get mad when things use my time sometimes because I feel like Ive got this giant clock on my forehead that just ticks and tocks and before we know it the bell will ring. And that is that.
But this kind of time. The time it took to get up the mountain, through the winding roads, and up on top of that glorious glorious mountain was just infinite.
The feeling of being on top of that mountain, in the orphanage with all those children…was like eating sunshine. Thats how good it was. I could taste the wild air and feel full.
These kids have no idea how lucky they are. Yeah they dont have money or (a lot of) food or (‘good’) clothes. But theyve got all they need. They have love, and kindness and accpetance and this amazing (understatement) school to go to and live on this mountain. And here I am, here WE are, in a little old town in Illinois, in the United States..with nothing by shopping malls and resturaunts around us. AS IF that is our life. Eat, shop, sleep. Wakeupanddoitalloveragain. Its sorta like…work, produce..consume: repeat.
I hate it.
My spirit longs for much much more. I would sell all of my ‘stuff’ and leave right now. If it was only that easy.
South Africa showed me a different way of life. Not that I was this superficial goddess who lived in luxury prior to my trip, but life is just very different in a first world country, rather a third world country.
I am so sick of all the ads on TV that lure us in to send our money to those in need.
People cant eat money!
Rather money, we should be sending them necessities. We should be the ones going, sending OURSELVES. If we sit in our comfy livingroom in a place that is familiar to us all of our lives, that does no good. None.
We are called to live outside of our comfort zone, and act in respondance to the one calling!
So with this next possibility of going back there, I am so enriched and excitied for whats to come. I will gladly live in a few pairs of jeans, some tshirts, and acquire just the basic basic items available to survive.
Everybody, meet Gogo.
She spends her days in her blue hut, coughing away from the fire in the center.
She had a pet chicken that will sooner or later be dinner.
And she doesn’t care about iPods, iPhones, Television or Toms.
She enjoys the simplicity in life and her music is the raindrops on her tin roof.
The baskets that Gogo makes. Each basket takes 3 days and sells for about R40. I think thats about…….8 bucks in US dolla’s. I bought 2. Everyone else bought 3 or 4.
We asked her, ‘Gogo, now that you have all this money…what are you going to do with it? What will you purchase?’
She looked at us and laughed.
On our way down from the Khula, we passed her and her son walking. They were on their way to get alcohol.
Haha I miss that old lady. She had a classy spirit.
Home sweet home…
We’ve only been back in the states for about 24 hours now. It feels pretty weird.
Family and friends want to know..’how was it?’
…but I mean, how do you answer that?
really, I have no idea where to even begin.
Now that we are back, reality is real again and life is just life.
The children are still going to school, living their reality; and now were are here, doing the same.
Its so hard to know that theres only so much we can do when I just want to save the world and wrap everyone in a big blanket full of rainbows and sunshine and know that everything will be fine.
But what kind of world would that be?
A weird world.
I think we need imperfection…if thats even a word.
I think the world is meant to have poverty and sickness and death.
But also weath, health, and happiness.
Its a weird balance but if everything was just the same, we would know no different.
We wouldnt have a chance to be grateful or ungrateful..
to be happy or not to be happy
to see change.
It would all just be….the same.
Im not really sure where Im going with this but the experience we had as a team on this trip was far more than any other experience I have had in my short 18 years of life thus far.
I want to go back, I will go back. The question is…when?
So now as I finish up these last 6 weeks of highschool, I am thinking more and more of my purpose. And I think it involves children. And Africa.
I will continue to blog about how things are going now that I am back in the states, and see where my spirit leads me in my next journey!
Today was our last day at the Murchison Centre.
This was the first place we came when we arrived. The kids ran to us with open arms, to complete strangers..yearning for love.
And we loved them. And they loved us.
It’s just hard to say goodbye. These faces have become so familiar, and our hearts share something in common, forever being connected.
Each of these kids have left a special fingerprint on our hearts, as we have left one on theirs too.
Nothing but love,