As I finished off yesterday.. I mentioned Center Day. Center Day is a big deal at COTN. The kids plan dances and songs to perform for their guests (us) and their families/guardians and the town. It is also a pretty big deal because they are able to feed 400-500 kids plus their families a meal of chicken, rice, beans and potatoes and juice! I also mentioned that I was supposed to spend the night at the children's home but was relieved that I did not. I just have to tell you - being completely candid and perhaps a bit too forthcoming - but you really haven't been sick until you've been sick in a third world country.. and you really can't appreciate how lucky we are with indoor plumbing and toilet paper that you can flush... until you've had to use a squatty potty.. aka a hole in the ground.. with limited toilet paper... It's an experience to say the least. So needless to say I wasn't feeling too hot on saturday - the one day that we were spending all day outside on probably one of the hottest days we were there. I couldn't help but push aside how I was feeling though to see how excited all the kids were made me excited!
I just had to throw this in here first. I think I mentioned that the little ones were afraid of us lighter skinned people so finding a small child that would let you love on them was a little hard. This was Jimmy's son and he is around two and he is one of those such children that would just look at us and cry. Luckily for me I caught him while he was asleep! Tricky, I know... So I was able to hold him and love on him while he was asleep. I'm not going to lie I was afraid that when he woke up, he might think he was in a nightmare and I was going to traumatize him.. BUT he was fine when he woke up in my arms AND I even got a smile out of him!!
The kids were already hard at work preparing for the meal - getting all the beans sorted.
I was able to do a little wound care.. my first aid kit came in handy!
Me and Britt and Meghan ready for center day! Representing Market Colors in Uganda!
This just happens to be one of my favorite pictures ever!
Those kids know us Americans so well and know that all we want to do is hold them and love on them.. so we happily did!
Let center day begin!!
Courtesy of the Klepacki's - I LOVE this photo. They pray with such passion.
I missed out on the native dancing because of my tummy problems BUT they can shake it.. and I plan to participate next time!
After the activities we were able to feed the children -
I have this uncanny ability to do what I need to do without actually thinking about what I'm doing - I thank/blame life in the NICU because I wouldn't be able to take care of a sick infant knowing that I was trying to save someone's son/daughter, sister/brother, grandson/granddaughter etc... and I had to do that while handing out juice. Just looking at their faces, seeing how well behaved they were waiting, yet knowing this might be their only meal that day or for the whole weekend. If you really looked and really thought about it, you'd lose it. And I know that once I lost it, I wouldn't be able to get it back. So I just prayed and focused on the task at hand and was so thankful that we were given the opportunity to hand out food to these precious faces.
I have to say that while handing out the food and passing the heat may have gotten to a few of us.. and things might have gotten a little weird. But always keeping things fun!
It was a super hot day, and a super long day, and I was squeezing my cheeks for most of it... (don't worry three imodium and a cipro later I was feeling MUCH better) But oh how great is our God. To celebrate with our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ halfway across the world was a wonderful experience. And I am so grateful for the chance to see how excited they were to share this day with us.
Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! Praise him with trumpet sound; praise him with lute and harp! Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe! Praise him with sounding cymbals; praise him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!