Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Goodbyes

Today as I boarded my first plane ride that begins my 2 week adventure to Buenos Aires, Lima, and Macchu Picchu with my best friends I can't help but imagine how it will feel when I am flying home. After all the next plane ride after this trip will be home. It's only 3 months more after we're done traveling- that is so crazy to think about and imagine! On one hand, I can't stop dreaming about seeing my family again and running into their arms. Yet at the same time, I can't imagine saying goodbye to AMOR, to my missionary family, and to the orphanage and all the kids and projects..   I can't stop thinking about my last goodbye- just a week ago- I said goodbye to the orphanage kids. They hugged me and didn't want to let go. They kissed me multiple times and brought me small presents. They loved me and I loved them. I do love them! I can't stop thinking about them. I want to protect them and I can't help but cry out for them and advocate "Who will love these kids?" "Who will protect them from all this pain?"     I will never forget them. I can't- their pictures and stories cut deep into my heart. I will never forget Patty- the 16 year old girl who made us feel like we had a purpose and a place in the orphanage- whose smile and laughter could change anyone's mood. I won't forget running my fingers over her many scars on her broken skin- from the places where she cut herself. I remember taking a sharpie and drawing a heart next to her scars and pleading with her never to cut again. God who is going to love this sweet, confused girl? I won't forget Nicol- teaching her English on the porch or dancing with her in the rain- or when she told me about her dad and her mom. Her dad hit her with his belt ON HER FACE how messed up is that? She is only 14 and she has grown up feeding herself with rain water and sugar. Now she's a bigger girl and friends tease her and call her "gordita" (fat). Who will tell her she's beautiful? Who will take care of her? Or baby Joshua who is 2 years old and raised in a house with babies and single moms- but has no mom or dad of his own. Often the kids put him in his crate because there is no one who cares about him. Who will tell him bedtime stories and kiss his cheeks goodnight?  And the thing is there's 86 more kids just like this with similar stories.. And then another hundred thousand around the world. But does that make it ok?! Because there's so many does that mean we can cover our eyes or turn away our heads or just forget or say it's just the way it is? Because to me IT'S NOT OK. I'm crying for these kids. I don't know what I can do but I know I have todo something. I know I can't save the world but I know I can impact someone's life. When I went back to visit the orphanage Monday, Nicol told me when I left Patty and Nicol cried. They cried. Well now I'm crying for them. Dear God, Help these kids. Please love them! Please show them someone cares!

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