• sarah@healingeyes.org

Tag Archives: kids

Billah

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Another letter ready to send to Billah in Uganda. My hope is that one of these letters will reach her so she knows I remember her. Thought a photo of her in each one would be a cute touch and I use construction paper to try and hide the fact that there is a photo in it so no one steals it. So frustrating that sending things over to Africa may never even reach them and if they do someone might even steal a photo that isn’t them.

But I will keep on trying with One child at a time…this is what Compassion is all about.

Healing Eyes

Fate turned into Chili?

Does prayer work in modern day life? What possibly comes from praying to something unseen?

I think not…I think are brains want to believe in something in order to not feel alone. That can be an interesting perspective right? It’s all make believe and coincidences….

Nah sorry guys but I just can’t think that way anymore. I have seen too much to sway me to the other side … and yes I do doubt and wobble around with these thoughts but after last night I again have to Let Go of my opinions and go with the flow.

I have been hoping for a CPA for several months now to help with my confusion on Math. Can I say how much I dislike math? It’s not just the numbers I don’t get but the forms and then record keeping and the possibility of screwing it all up. In a rather interesting twist of fate a CPA appeared yesterday because of Chili. Yes food again was the catalyst for the answered prayer. I think its the old ‘break bread’ with each other fable that seems to really work!

Last night was Healing Eyes first official Event and fundraiser. Prior to it I was doubting and wanting it to all disappear, my stomach was in knots about talking in front of people, I thought it was all going to blow up in my face, and I would embarrass myself. Big Sigh….but it all worked out. After I put the mic to my mouth and began spewing word after word and I started to feel the evil nerves dissipate I gained some confidence. Of course than I stammered and choked on words and cried but I got some laughs out of the audience and some tears. Perhaps one person walked away feeling what I felt and that this world needs people with that unhardened heart to see beyond the pain of ourselves and step out into the unknown.
By the end of it as the mic was put away and I stepped aside I felt utter relief it was over and my brain truly shut down. Every bit of me was gone and now others around started to help pick up and I stood there in amazement of all these people helping. It’s sooooooo cool to see people come together and even cooler when it’s something worth working for.

So I think Healing Eyes will continue on and as my Prayer for A CPA was answered in a very cool ‘God’ way I will keep letting go and letting this mysterious invisible friend take the lead.

Photos to come soon! 🙂

Healing Eyes

Restless

Wide awake on my bedroom floor…adjusting to sleeping with a stiff back. Night 2 with my homemade nest of blankets. In Africa I had a foam mattress..that sounds nice now. Perspective on appreciating the small things.

I was looking at Amazima’s website today and the story of Katie.
Am I ever going to prosper like that ?
Is this all just too impossible?

I can’t sleep…I’m worrying about little beelah. If she is safe, still going to school, loved…I miss her.
I think I am too easily sucked in by a smile. Which is hilarious as kids annoy me…well Whiney ones ha.
Maybe it was her giggle and shyness. Or maybe it was her gratitude for life even in dire conditions. Compared to life here that is. Actually she had an amazing home…nature and water. My favorite!

Watch over those kids God and pave the way for my return. Let me help them…and let them help me.

Healing Eyes

My little friend amongst the waterfall

There is a beautiful country where people are struggling to see past the pain.

There is a beautiful country where arms are open wide for the love of compassion.

There is a country where you can see a glimpse into the past of what life was like before all the technology and modern conveniences we take for granted daily. For example…a toilet! Yes that simple porcelain seat in your cozy bathroom that allows for a private and comfortable hygiene luxury.

After spending 3 weeks in Africa I appreciate the Toilet and its abundant availability in the States. I didn’t mind sacrificing my comfort by hovering over a small crack in the ground while flies buzzed around…I didn’t mind always carrying toilet paper with me…But I am so grateful for the clean toilets awaiting me back in Michigan.

Of course running water already has been a sacrifice I’ve learned while living in St. Croix. Drinking tap water is an amazing luxury in the states. Having hot showers that come out of pipes is so delightful.  It was fun learning how to use a jug of water to pour into a basin to then pour over myself in order to bathe…that was humbling.

I am discouraged…I can not tell a lie…I have doubts…I have fears…and yes I do almost want to throw in the towel.
Can I admit that?

What now? 3 weeks away from what I had grown accustomed to while in St. Croix. 3 weeks tour of Uganda in order to try and see what am I ever to do next? I drove myself mad with that question! Simply mad! I even cried and stressed and got angry about not knowing. What the Hell am I to do with my tomorrows?!

Towards the end of my tour…after breaking free from the group I arrived in a more secluded area of Africa. It was after a very long drive on terrible roads and a slight detour (cough cough got lost). It was beginning to rain and the sun was setting, we didn’t know where we were and were desperate to find the place we were looking for in the mountains. The skies cleared and a rainbow appeared in the distance…directly over where we needed to go. Yes a fricken Rainbow! Ahh I like signs and symbolism but this one seemed too cliche. At the end of this rainbow was CiSiyi Falls and a little girl named Beela. She was tiny and giggled and was very shy…I instantly fell in love. We giggled at eachother and I played the ukulele for her…she shyly danced in the moonlight. That night I was blessed abundantly! Was this the place I searched for? The place I am to eventually stay at? Was it a dream? How can I go back?

So many questions and fears.

But little Beela is still there giggling away amongst the waterfall and perhaps a bit happier having met 2 mazungoos (what African’s call White people) from a far off land. I’ll write to her and hope one day we will meet again.

So what’s next? Well I think St. Croix chapter is nearly finished and now I must face some lingering grieving in Michigan while building up my non-profit company by raising money to go back to Africa. Buy land and begin an unconventional ministry there.

Healing Eyes

Imagine a breathe on fire

How is it my place to question where I am led to go?

How is it my place to doubt?

When all around me I see pain and suffering…can I turn a deaf ear to it’s call?

When the time comes to go and leave behind all that I love can I say No? Or perhaps delay until it makes sense to all?

What if life was more than we imagine? What if life was in a girl standing quietly in the shadows…

Waiting quietly in repose

Waiting quietly in repose

Close your eyes and imagine…breathe in the stagnant air filled with the smell of bodily fluids and fecal decay…the dry dusty air burns your eyes as tears roll down your stained face. Now imagine each day the same … Waiting …. Waiting… For more…for something to break the cycle of pain. Open your eyes…your heart and realize it’s still the same today and that girl is waking up in the shadows with no change.

Do you fear?

Do you wonder what the “least of these” see each day? Unimaginable! But have hope because each of “these” smile more in a day than those with the Most!

Who is that?

Perhaps in suffering comes something more…the gift of love.

Healing Eyes

Children suffering from cancer in Uganda

The children suffering from cancer received clothes donated from the children in st Croix. I’ve never seen kids enjoy clothes so much. The beautiful dresses were a big hit and the dress pants were also with the boys.

The ukulele was a great way to connect with the boys and have them a distraction from feeling sick from the chemo treatments. Made me remember how exhausted Andy was from chemotherapy and I just wish I had learned the ukulele while he was alive.

 

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Healing Eyes

Saying Goodbye…for now

I cry…
I smile…
I worry ..

About the kids I’m saying good bye to for a month and half.

Thursday we made Christmas cards that I pulled together last minute. Trying to think of a fun craft that was more than coloring a print off. I wanted the girls to be creative and get gluey fingers haha.
I was running between desks cutting pipe cleaners, punching holes, and flying cotton for snow.

Does this all make a difference? Really?

My favorite girl that reminds me of me was sassy and also loving during class. She came because I told her mom I had a special treat. The French truffles for her to experience. She at first turned her nose up but then she came around and loved it. She is sooo like me lol.

Before class she pulled me aside and asked if I would taker her out after class one more time before I left. She said it was out last chance before I flew out. Normally she doesn’t like goodbyes but this time she was facing it head on by trying to squeak out more time with me.

I gave in of course.

I picked her up in the projects at night. And contrary to beliefs there was no gunfire or drugs, that I could see, when I drove in with my jeep. I did stick out though and a couple guys peered at me but didn’t do anything.

We want to see a movie and she brought her little cousin with. He annoyed her by talking too much. I need to work on her temper.
When I dropped her off I begged for a hug goodbye and she gladly gave me one. Normally she doesn’t do goodbyes. This time she did …

I cry..
I smile…
I wait..

For what’s next.
Africa?
Non profit ?
How will it all come together ?

I am so uncomfortable not having control!!!!

Yet all I can think of is a sassy, stubborn, little girl who might be missing me.

Healing Eyes

Chocolate from France oh lala

Forgive me readers but today I am a bit under the weather. Since Monday not much has happened and not many kids have been coming to the Lighthouse for after school. Bit disappointing since I have an amazing treat to share with them from France. A couple of the girls got to taste a bit yesterday but the one girl I really want to give the candy to hasn’t shown up yet. Hopeful she comes tomorrow, the last day of class before Christmas break.

The treat is chocolate truffles straight from Strasbourg France. I asked an old colleague/friend to mail some from my favorite chocolate store since one of my girls didn’t know what a Truffle was. As you can see they really liked them!

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Healing Eyes

Don’t worry..I have your back

After arriving late to the boys and girls club due to my Jeep being indisposed again. Yes my Jeep is my thorn in my side but it is teaching me patience and to roll with calamity. I took her (aka Jeep) to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles today for registration renewal and it was not as awful as an experience as I was prepared for. The inspector was nice and charming, the people inside were cordial and the wait wasn’t terribly long. Now the system of calling your number (which is handwritten on a piece of scrap paper) was a bit illogical but all in all it worked out. I still like to call this place 2.5 world country since it really has a lot of idiosyncrasies to it. All the St Croix readers will understand what I mean:)

Sadly I failed the inspection test:( my reverse lights were not working. So it is at the mechanic for that and also to see why my radiator fluid is slowly disappearing and why there is a greasy residue below it. I hope its not oil.

But I am not going to complain because as my anxiety level was rising because of the Jeep I got a wonderful email today from a supporter who wants to help out with my Jeep Expenses. So YAY! Don’t worry..Be Happy Now! yes I did just quote a caribbean type song…I think I am allowed to though.

Last night I thought about how I could quit this mission. What it would take to return back to Michigan and get a job, settle down and be normal. I really was close to throwing in the bag since the pressure of succeeding is weighing heavy. Having to find a CPA and tax experts, liability insurance, 501c3 status, board of directors, fundraising, it’s all enough to make me think I can’t do it. It’s too much and I am too broken to continue.

But

With a single email from a Michigander I feel like I can keep going and it will be ok. I will not end up in a cardboard box! Timing is everything I guess.

The kids today were ‘behaved’. Yes, behaved! One of the boys said, ‘Oh your here’. One of the girls apologized for calling me Mean because I guess once I arrived the kids were saying ‘Miss Sarah is here and she isn’t coming in to say hello to you.’ and so that one girl said I was mean. But later she apologized because I did come in and say hi to her. These kids are so attentive to my comings and goings.

Three boys needed me today for Social studies and spelling words. Two of them like to cheat off each other and so that was a challenge. As always he called me ‘mommy’. So weird.

Later on we worked on bracelets some more. The boys counted them and we have 213 so far! They are so proud of their work and excited to think they are helping kids in Africa. It seems counting also is a way to keep them from being wild and crazy, allows them to see their accomplishment, and teaches them math. Picture this…2 boys counting bracelets while kids are screaming and running around doing several different things, an adult is screaming out names for pickup, and I am just standing there watching the magical rhythm of this club. I still don’t understand how yelling out kids names and showing anger towards them when they don’t respond is at all a positive experience for them.

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Healing Eyes

Expect more from the least

What would my job description be now if I had to explain it to others?

I just got back from taking 4 kids to the movies and I had only thought it was going to be 3 but once again another kid snuck in. It seems to be getting easier to get the kids after school now. It feels like I am making progress with their mothers finally which makes me think. Perhaps I should try harder to get to know these woman that work hard to provide for their children. Yes i could think the opposite and assume the reason why they let me take their kids out to the beach or movies is because they don’t want to do those thing. Or. Perhaps its because they need to work a lot in order to put food on the table and give their kids a place to stay. It may not look like the best lifestyle to others looking in but once you really start to look you can see how much they care for their kids and how much more I have to learn about their stories too.

My new job description is going to be relationship builder to those with the least of things. Maybe I”ll find that its not quite what I think and they have a very rich life measured in another way.

After the movie I ran into a boy from the boys and girls club, he recognized me first of course. Then I a mother caught my eye and said ‘Hi Miss Sarah’. It seems I am starting to be noticed more. She was interested to hear more about my trip to Africa coming up and how she can help. Maybe God was right when he said I needed to seek out others that I wouldn’t have originally assumed to want to give. It’s always the people you don’t expect that step up. I better be careful what I ask for as now I am afraid I might get an abundance of supplies to bring with me to Africa. I’ll just have to pack nothing for myself and wear only 2 outfits in order to have room for all the gifts.

My wish is that others could see what I see here. Experience what I am feeling. Above all know what it is to Give Back and step outside your comfort zone.

Tomorrow I got sweet talked into agreeing to taking the girls to the beach/pool again. Perhaps it will be hard to say goodbye when the day comes. Whatever am I to do!

Healing Eyes