Many cups have hot tea and honey have been required throughout the last 24 hours. This bug has taken me down hard and of course the high altitude of Addis Ababa doesn’t do much for the tightness and wheezing. Poor Hayden keeps making sure he is not in the same room with Darth. I barely slept last night so the decision was made today for both Hayden and I to remain behind here at the all accommodating Ethiopian Guest House. They have been outstanding and so dedicated to making me feel better. Hard part is I cannot talk above a whisper and between that and the language barrier welll it is quite a site to watch me communicate.
Our team is visiting a very poor and rural area today and helping with the distribution of hundreds of new shoes for children in great need. Most of you are aware of my passion for making sure all people have a pair of shoes to protect their feet. In Africa people are very susceptible to parasites that burrow in to their feet from the soil. For most, shoes are a luxury and when driving in the more rural areas outside of the city most children are barefoot. When our daughter came home from Ethiopia she had a severe cough from being laid in soil and obtaining parasites. The parasites burrow through the bottoms of feet. If left untreated can cause many delays and many health issues. Please click here to learn more. Of course many companies are now getting on top of this crisis by donating one pair of shoes when a pair are purchased. There are of course amazing shoes through Toms and also Rootz. This is a brilliant idea. In addition I love Soles for Souls who find homes for all gently used shoes donated. There distribution is worldwide and if you are anything like us we have an access of shoes at home. When you send in shoes they will send you a detailed summary of where the shoes were distributed. We love Soles for Souls!
So today Hayden and I are behind surrendering to germs. 🙂 It’s not easy. We came her to be with the people who need the kind smile the volley of the soccer ball. the pair of shoes fitted to their feet, the touch and the hug. Not going was not in our cards today but here we are. We give it all up and we wait to hear all about it from the amazing members of our team. Awesome people with exceptional hearts! Here are a few favorite pictures of our experience so far. Loving these people is so easy. There is a contagious joy here even when it appears that the need is so great! There is a saying that I learned from the people at Mocha Club and it rings so true to me now more than ever.
I need Africa more than Africa needs me!
This is what love looks like. We drove up in four vans to an orphanage visited by few. It took only minutes before the children began to peak out from the doors and windows of the shelters they live in. Within minutes a few were at our sides all nestled right in and curiously wondering about our presence. I broke open the potato sacks and you should have seen them all jumping around the field, trying to figure out the purpose of the sacks. We played soccer and Hayden made his paper airplanes. Brady made balloon animals and it was a huge blessing to see the looks on their faces after all the interaction and fun. It may seem minimal but that is how you change a life. We changed their very DNA that day through love, play, touch and prayer. I had to honor the request not to take pictures so there are only a few I asked permission to take. It was a day I won’t soon forget and the teachers shared that the kids were all saying, “This is our best day EVER!”
Thank you God for sending me…