Monday, November 17, 2008

Africa

A few years ago, Heather returned from Africa and shared her experiences with me. Through her I became familiar with the people and lifestyle that she loved so much. I decided I needed to go experience it for myself. I had a desire to help and a desire to know the family that Heather had come to call her own. I knew what I saw would be difficult and that I would in some way be changed. What I didn't know was that I would have to leave part of my heart with those I met. That I would never again be able to look at a picture of an African child and not feel the hurt of what they suffer. That because I know and love them I would sorrow with them. That I would be so driven to share their stories.
While I was there I felt the impression many times that when I returned home I needed to share the stories. I have used my blog to do this. It has taken me months to finish. I would think about it often but it was always such a heavy thing to write a post so I often postponed it until the need to share became too great. I decided to put them all in order so that I could have a better record of it. I added this post and the last one, "Saying Goodbye" today. The rest have been written over the past few months.Blogging about the stories was the first step. It only reaches a small group so now I want to take the message to more people. Heather and I hope to hold a meeting with the public and share the stories. We are also thinking of doing a race that will help raise money. She will be returning in September to stay for a year and by then we hope to have money for the school and materials where she will be teaching. Please, if any of you have ideas or ways you can help, let me know. These children deserve what we can give. I hope you will take the time (if you haven't already) to read about the people in Africa. Hopefully their stories will change your life as they have mine.

6 comments:

Stephanie said...

Beautifully written, and I'm thouroghly inspired. I want to auction off cakes if it ever is possible. I love those little ones too. I was having a conversation with the in-laws about Africa, and I was surprised by how passionate I became. Just talking about my brother, Evans, and about Carol, and what Charity deals with on a day to day basis with the newborns, it just is overwhelming. And I love it. Thanks to you and Heather for instilling a love for these people within me.

Bridget said...

My aunt goes to various African countries as a nurse and I would love to do the same someday. what an amazing experence you had!

Tonya said...

My heart is so touched as I read your stroies. I think you and Heather are so amazing for what you have done to love and help the kids in Africa. Not many people learn the stories and then take the next step of actually going and seeing and doing. That is what I love about your stories. They are first hand and very real. AMAZING!

Julie said...

What a wonderful, proactive way to help. You and Heather are so inspiring! I've loved reading what you've shared here.

brenda said...

I can't get over the amazing pictures both you and Heather have taken. You need to put it all in a book...(those would make good Christmas presents and keepsakes). Thank you for taking the time to document all of this and share it with us! Your love and compassion are infectious, Heidi.

Nichole said...

Thank you for sharing your stories. Recently I went to Ghana and experienced some of what you have described but truly didn't know how to put my experience in words the way you have. The spirit is strong there and as I met your sister Heather recently as we talked about Africa I could feel that same spirit. Thanks again for sharing! Nichole