I was talking to my mom on the phone last night. A long distance phone call or skype date once a week. She told me she really enjoyed my latest blog. My parents had printed it off so my grandmother could read it. “I was only there one week April, I feel like I get to know so much more about what life is really like there by reading your blog,” she said. For a moment I was content in the praise. Then I started to think back to the blogs I have written. I am not truthful. I skirt around the really hard stuff. I write when I am in a good mindset. Nobody wants to read about depressing things. People do not want to read how Jubilee really is. That’s too hard to hear. Someone, somewhere, decided people in America can’t handle the reality of life in a third world country beyond pulling on their heartstrings for donations. I can’t do that.
Jubilee is holding a malnourished infant in your arms on a three hour trip to Port Au Prince for emergency care, which he never responds to and eventually dies. It is the tears, the prayers and desperate whispers that are answered with his final breath.
Jubilee is Wisguey’s little brother having sudden seizures that render the little boy unable to walk, talk or function. Being carried around by his father who will cry when he thinks about his son.
Jubilee is Katiana’s mother sending her to live with family and going to the Dominican Republic to earn money and then dying suddenly. Leaving Katiana alone; Coming to school in a dirty skirt, hair undone and scabies wounds covering arms, legs and her head.
Jubilee is Dordjinia’s father kicking 3 of her front teeth out or up into her gums after beating her mother.
Jubilee is the hydrocephalus baby brought to us by a desperate mother. His head 4 times the size it should be and us being able to do very little because we aren’t surgeons.
Jubilee hungry kids, orphaned infants, widows and mothers left.
Jubilee is hunger and desperation, kids weighing 16 pounds at nearly 3 years and 32 pounds at 10 years. It is crying and praying and feeling every emotion God put into us. It is being woken up by kids asking for jobs so they might eat tonight and falling asleep to the sound of hungry bellies, wails from hungry kids and the quiet despair that rocks them to sleep. It is the desperate look in their eyes as they don’t tell you they are hungry because they know you are tired of hearing it. It is pain that pulls at our hearts.
And all of this in one week. One normal week too. So don’t think I’ve given you an accurate picture of Jubilee. I say there is hope, and there is. But there is a lot of hurt and pain amidst that hope.
I know after posting this I will catch flack from people. But this is me being real. My friends are hungry. Friends I love and care about. Rain leaks in their roofs and they sleep in mud. Kids get sick and die from things we could easily take care of in the states with a simple shot or a tube in the skull. People we care about and have invested in die. Bad stuff happens and all we can do is hang our heads, cry if we still have tears and beg God to show us the value and reason in it all.