Yesterday afternoon there were 12 kids at our home swinging, jumping rope, running, dressing up, and riding bikes around. Anni was leading the pack in a search for rocks and sticks for a "cooking" enterprise in the works. It was what can only be described as chaos. I sat watching and listening to the laughing, the singing, the arguing, the noises of friends playing. And I thanked God.
I was distinctly reminded of when we first came over over 3 and a half years ago. Annikah was only 1 and most attempts to play with our neighbors resulted in tears. For her and me. We could not communicate and Anni probably felt as hopeless as I did many days that we could ever feel any sense of being at home here. I spent many days crying and trying to convince myself moving here was not the worst thing I could have done for my kids. I was fighting the nagging feeling that they would forever be different, teased, or not be able to really fit in and just be kids. Yesterday I was reminded of just what He has done for our girls and our family in the last few years. Of course we are still different but our difference is now accepted and loved. And we have been changed forever by the friendships we have made here. My girls have friends. Real friends that they run and play and fight and pretend and have adventures with. And what they have learned by living here and loving here has been so much greater than any hardship we have faced. The richness of our experiences here escapes description. And remembering all He has done is giving Him thanks that even when I lack trust He is good.
As a special treat I gave the hungry little posse of watoto each a well worn coin that they held tight in their dirty little hands and they all made a mad dash for our neighbor's home. One of the older kids from Shule tied Evy to her back and held Anni's hand as they wondered to the neighbor's house to buy some kachori (fried potato balls). They made their way back about 10 minutes later and my girls were smiling from ear to greasy, dirty ear. We said goodbye to our friends for the night and after shooing them away we headed inside.
Today I am remembering all He has done and I am so thankful there is a place for our family here.