I’m writing this from the Philippines. It’s late. I can’t sleep. I spent time today at our new Love146 Boys Home as well as our Round Home for girls. So when I close my eyes I see the faces of these children and can still hear their laughter. Yes… laughter. These are children who are taking back their childhoods with a determination that I can only describe as fierce.
To be honest, I was a bit apprehensive about meeting one particular girl for the first time today. She is the youngest child we have ever taken into our care. She is only four years old.
Did you feel that? The gut-wrench? The instant ache in the deepest part of you at the thought of why she, at only four years old, is even here? That’s what I was feeling driving up to the gates of our Round Home where she lives now.
Once inside the gates, our van came to a stop. The doors opened, and pushing her way through the other girls, and up into the van, bounced this little one. A self-appointed, tiny ambassador, welcoming us with a smile that could light up the world.
Later on, I noticed she had one of those rub on temporary tattoos on her arm. It was a flower. I pointed to it and told her I liked it. She then pointed to the tattoos on my own arms. (Not so temporary.) She looked up at me. Then back at her arm. Then back at my arms. Then looked back in my eyes.
Her face broke into a huge grin. And then she started to laugh. And laugh some more. I joined her. She showed off our arms to the other girls comparing our common “ink”. We high-fived.
Sometimes we ache. Sometimes we laugh. Today was one of those days when we did both at the same time. And somehow it was enough.