Stories, that is.
* Last month some of our older children came to me, beckoning me to the kitchen where there was a woman waiting. When I had a chance to break away from the orphanage, I went to find that the older kids had opened the gate for a needy woman who now sat at our table eating our dinner. I walked in and gave the only greeting I know in her language, and without a response she greedily grabbed my sweatshirt with food-covered hands and started tugging, and then my pants. With the language barrier I wasn’t sure I was understanding her correctly, until one of our workers came in and told me that she wanted my clothes. I looked at this woman and saw no plea, no petition of any sort, just a demand for the clothes I had on. For some reason I’d never learned how to respond in like situations and was a bit baffled. We did send her away with a few sweaters and a roll, and without the slightest thanks she hurried away.
* The family that began the orphanage, as I mentioned before, has adopted 21 children themselves between the mum and two of the daughters. There isn’t one of the children that doesn’t have an amazing and encouraging story, so here are a few more of them. Murphy, 4-5yrs, was actually not born. Her mum went in to have an abortion and though she was aborted God would not allow this little one to be murdered. The doctor knew she was still alive, took the dustbin outside the room and got in touch with TLC, who immediately took in our Murphy. Reuel is twelve and a good buddy of mine. He was heard screaming from inside a sack in the gutter on the side of a road and a passerby picked him up and brought him to us. His adopted brother Joshua, who is the same age, was found in a public toilet, umbilical cord and all the rest still attached – abandoned thankfully where someone would find him.
* The Local Soap Opera. One of our premature babies, Nikita, has a white mother and who knows what for a father. The mother gave birth in an hotel room, and someone convinced her to bring the child here. She did but with the hopes of taking her back on day. Of course the mother is an alcoholic who lives in a shanty and will, therefore, never be allowed to care for the child now that social work is involved. A few weeks after we got this very pale baby a black man showed up named Frank claiming to be the father. Though obvious to all that this child was not his, he insists that she is. Then the mother came the next week, said we must feed her girl bottled water because she’s thirsty and doesn’t like milk, and left her out naked on the changing table “to air her out”. She is not going to be able to take Nikita but she also will not see her in the arms of another, so the poor child will remain family-less with us. I am the lucky one who gets to supervise the mother, Laura, which also means that I get to hear her trying to figure out who the father might be when she comes to visit. There are six options.