I was talking to a friend a few days ago. She was telling me how when she meets new people she doesn’t have a lot to say in terms of life experiences. She has lived in one country for most of her life and has not gone through anything life-changing in a sense. I went on to tell her that one does not necessarily have to go through all the life-changing experiences but can also live through their friends and their experiences. Sometimes the most rewarding experiences and life-changing experiences are also the most painful.
I continued to give her examples from my life. Last year I went to Tanzania and worked there for 6 months and it was the most amazing time of my life and personally feel like it changed my life, however, I also spent some of my loneliest nights there. Sometimes I would want to work in the farms just to work myself so hard that by the time I got back to my apartment, I would just fall asleep. My mountain, Kilimanjaro, was also a milestone for me. At that moment, I did not grasp what the climb meant, even what getting to the summit meant but today I look back and it taught me so much. And even though I look back on it with so much pride, I do not forget shivering in my tent on the first night thinking this was the hardest thing I would ever do. I do not forget unwrapping that chocolate bar in the snow and watching it fall to the ground and be too tired to pick it up.
However, through everything that this year brought me , a lot of what got me through were kids. Little children from the ages of 2 -6. The point where they start talking and are developing their personalities. Not only do they watch the world in wonder, they want to share it with you. In Tanzania, whenever I felt ungrateful, I would go and spend time with the orphans. They were around these same ages. I would walk in and they would all gather around me. ( I don’t think it was “me” they were excited to see, but a person to share their love with.) Not only were they loving , they were happy and they got excited over the smallest of things and it reminds you of how you’re really suppose to be living your life. You are suppose to live it in wonder and excitement not in dread and lethargy. Kids climb ever tree they see , ride every bicycle in sight and hop on one foot and laugh for ages. They experience it all. You came feeling ungrateful, but you leave knowing that you can have fun doing the simplest of things.In Congo, I fell in love with my best friend’s little daughter, Aniqa. She was naughty but reminded me a lot of myself. She wouldn’t let me sit still if she wasn’t. If I was lying next to her, and turned around she would turn my face around to face her and insist that I had to look at her while she slept. She wasn’t afraid to express her feelings. We would sit on the trampoline and look up to the stars and name them random things. When you’re with a kid – you become one. Its the magic they have. They can make you one of them. I’m volunteering right now and I have little 5 and 6 years olds. They’re the cutest things ever. A kid wasn’t feeling well last week and I didn’t know what to do . You can’t give a kid medicine and so we called the parent. In the meantime I thought out loud to him and said ” I’m not sure what to do right now, should I give you a hug?” and he replied ” Yeah, Maybe that’ll make me feel betttewwww” It melted my heart. They’re so innocent, so loving, so caring, so straightforward, so happy and they can bring so much joy.
Anyone who is in constant contact with a kid knows the magic of a kid. With all of this being said , the Sandy Hook shootings as well as the China stabbings are a real tragedy. Every kid was magic in their house , their school , their community and every kid made people smile wherever they went. It is heartbreaking to think that this world , which sometimes lacks hope and happiness, lost 20 beautiful shining souls. They are the epitome of innocence and life. They bring smiles to all faces. My heartfelt sympathies and love go out to all those who have lost their loved ones. People from all over the world have you in their prayers.
Below is a beautiful picture taken of “Children in Pakistan lighting candles to remember the victims of the School shooting in Connecticut, U.S.A.