“Why are you sitting over here alone?” I asked her. (Although I knew she couldn’t understand my question with the language barrier between us). I sat down beside her and smiled.
Before going to Mexico last week, I had a long conversation with my husband. I explained that although I have been living my passion to connect with others through Be You and Thrive (via the Podcast and sharing stories of women on the Blog), in my heart, I’ve felt like I’ve needed to connect to others in new and creative ways.
As tears strolled down my face sharing wholeheartedly that evening with him, I described how blessed I feel that he and I not only share a mutual fondness for travel, but have the gift of being able to travel more often than most. We have visited many different countries and cultures together—and it has truly impacted our lives.
“So, when I have the opportunity on our travels, I would love to give back and connect with others in need.”
Prior to arriving at the orphanage, we were given a list of ‘needs for the month’. It included simple things like toothpaste, shampoo, and other everyday essentials. We stopped by a local market and found the items needed, and we also found great joy within that simple act of purchasing items that we normally take for granted at home—knowing it was an actual need for the children we would eventually meet.
How fortunate are we.
We were greeted by a beautiful gray-haired woman and the sound of her cane tapping against the floor with each step. She spoke more English than we spoke Spanish, and in our short conversation explained she was originally from Mexico City, and has been taking care of the children for over 15 years. (On our visit, there were 33).
As she opened the door to a nearby room—it was a wonderful site, as many were playing with colorful toys on the floor. We introduced ourselves to another woman and her daughter who were attending to them. ‘Hola! Mi nobre es Dannielle Y es David’.
With glitter-heart stickers in tow, David and I each placed one on our faces, and began greeting one child at a time by placing a heart on theirs. Big smiles, a few looks of concern and before David realized, as he knelt on the floor, he was surrounded by many children who were placing stickers all over his face. ‘Mas! Mas! Mas!’ (More! More! More!)
Soon after, I brought out much larger hearts, markers and different stickers to begin decorating them together. ‘Corazon!’ and ‘Amor!’ were a few words being shared. (Heart! Love!). After decorating them, we began taping them up, as if they were dancing on the wall—which of course led to the children wanting to each be picked up one-by-one, in order to place the hearts higher and higher…!
Human flying airplanes, ring around the rosie, smiles, laughter, and many hugs later, I noticed she went off to the other side of the room alone and sat down. A small, sweet little girl with braids in her hair, a pretty pink skirt, pink tights and shoes. I sat down beside her and smiled. She was trying desperately to take her shoes off and so I began helping her. ‘Perhaps they are uncomfortable,’ I thought.
She placed her small hand inside the sole and out came a piece of something yellow. It was torn, and I couldn’t quite tell what it was. Her beautiful brown eyes lit up as she placed the ‘yellow’ on my shirt and then quickly went back inside her shoe, to repeatedly place more. Within moments, I realized they were the stickers inside the shoe that depicted the size. And then I smiled big —‘Oh my, the many truths within this simple act’…..
If I could have spoke for her that day, it’s as if she was saying, “I actually have something similar to what you gave me, yet it’s different. I’m going to use what I have available to me, in my own unique way. And I’m going to sit here and work at it, until I can use all that I have, and use it in all the ways I desire.“
How about the feeling that you’re lacking in one way or another? (I’m raising my hands over here). I have felt lack of the ability to accomplish many things, inadequate to communicate as I desire, and more times than I care to admit—feelings of insufficiency, in regard to what I have to give.
Are we over-thinking? Are our eyes so focused on being a part of what others are doing, that we miss the opportunity to fully embrace what we already have to offer? Are we comparing? Did we forget our uniqueness?
The young girl whom I met that day in Mexico is an orphan. She’s thankfully in a safe environment, but as we as bystanders look at her situation, we may see all of the current lack in her life—especially at such a young age.
May we each practice taking steps forward to committing to take action toward our ideas, desires, passions, new ways of thinking and giving. And embrace the abundance that we already are.
Casa Hogar Maximo Cornejo Quiroz A.C.
Carretera a Tepic 1100, Guadalupe Victoria,
Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco 48307
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