Being in America feels weird.
Here, I'm not afraid to use water, from any location. I can drink any
water. From a faucet. I can wash my hands in it. I can cook with it. I
can get it from INSIDE my house. And I LIVE in a house. A real house.
Not a trash heap, made from old tires and sheet metal and rags and
When I walked out to my car today, there were no people around. No
crowds thronging the streets. No children offering to sell me gum or
shine my shoes. I got into my own car, by myself, (instead of into a
minivan stuffed through the roof with passengers) and I pulled out onto
the street. All the traffic followed the same rules and patterns,
instead of crazily weaving in and out and all the pedestrians were
safely on the sidewalks, instead of dancing between the cars. No
children, maimed people, or mothers with babies tied to their backs came
to my window to beg for food. No eyes haunted me with their desperate
stares, no one tugged my sleeve to ask for help.
But still they haunted me.
I drove to Wegman's to get fruit and milk and cereal. Instead of people
selling their produce on the street, all the food was clean, safe to eat
immediately, and there was too much of it. Everywhere. In a cool, air
conditioned warehouse, with clean, solid floors. No mud, or flies. No
one walked up to me and tried to convince me that their food was the
best, and that I should buy from them. I was deeply thankful to be in a
place where plentiful food abounded and was easily accessible, but at
the same time, I started to cry. All I could think about were all the
starving children I had seen. The stupid fruit and vegetable bins in
Wegmans could feed hundreds of them. I started picking through the
apples, trying to avoid the bruised ones, and then I cried more. Because
those bruised and damaged apples would be treasures in Ethiopia.
I saw a little kid screaming and swatting at his mom. I heard other kids
complaining and whining. And I remembered walking into the older kids'
Transition Home, and how all the kids ran to us and begged to be held or
hugged. They just wanted love. Just a hug. Or a kiss. Every time I would try to put a little kid down they would scrunch up their legs and refuse to stand, and cling to me. How one little
girl with a hunchback came and stood a few feet away and just stared at
me and kept saying, "Mom, beautiful Mom," until I started crying and put
down the other kids I was holding so I could go to her.
I hate being home. I feel sick. All the wealth, and the waste.
Everything I see, I relate and compare to Ethiopia, and then I cry. It's
like a depression.........a heartbreak..........a crime. I am haunted
by all the eyes. Children from the streets running next to me, holding
my clothes, begging for food. They say it, and sign it, "Food, food,
food. Please, food. Please. I have a small brother at home. A small
brother. He hungry. I no lie. Please, food. Food."
God help America.
Update: we passed court on 8/17/12 and so the kids are legally ours in both countries. We can't bring them home however, until we pass embassy. Usually families start the embassy wait immediately after court. Our situation is different (of course). We have to move, get another homestudy update, go through USCIS again, and THEN start our embassy wait. Which means probably November or December before our kids can come home. Please pray for us as we try to push through this extra paperwork. We miss them so badly and it is so hard, knowing they are waiting for us and that this process just keeps getting dragged out. Thank you!