sunday + monday + tuesday

raw aloe for my raw shoulders
good morning, my friend aloe. how i love you, and that you grow fresh in the courtyard for me to break off with a satisfying snap and ooze out your juicy goodness onto my very raw shoulders.

yeah. still burned.

so today was kind of shocking. aside from it being our last full day. we have definitely slowed down as a group, which is fine, but i think it's setting in that the time is nigh for our departure. we still packed in the fun despite that and hit a final orphanage that was a few blocks away from our hotel. this is the shocking: there's a front room, a playroom that is bright and crowded, a back room where the cribs are. what hit me so hard was the utter sparseness of it, not in a modern way but in a this cabinet has no door way. i couldn't imagine how it was good for them to grow up in this, and i can't imagine what they must have come from if this was the step up. but even though it was what it was, it was also clean and there were two nuns running the show that were obviously loving people. they were very wary and watchful of us, but still inviting.
it's pretty bare

the children sleep side-by-sidethe room is sparse, but bright and clean

and all the food and washing is done in the back room.
kitchen and nursery in one room

the kids are definitely sweet and for the most part pretty healthy
joshua and amalie

they were excited to have new playmates. we brought bubbles, toys, and a lot of affection. i still don' t know how we passed so much time there. it felt like it was only about thirty minutes, but it was maybe three times that.
playroom
playroom

but the world being what it is, time moved on and we were only there for a few hours.
heading out

we spent the afternoon packing, talking, sharing our experiences with each other. some really good conclusions came out of it. i shared parts of this train of thought: that in my life, i've seen and been and done many things, and i've seen myself transition from reckless to fearless to fearless and unashamed to bear my scars. i remember when i started telling people that i was having a hard time in high school, remembering that people were too much like me, too young to get it, to help or change it. and so i handled it as best i could. and brad was one of the first people i told my whole story to, two years ago in nicaragua, i was sputtering and stammering and emotional and i can't imagine what he must have thought, but i was so scared that coming back would dismantle me all over again. and instead it showed me all i've become under God's watchful and faithful heart, that i am much more than the sum of my parts. that we all are. i feel that being here i've had a glimpse of the shadow of the idea of how big the big picture can be. i feel like being here has diminished my ego a little more, and the edges that keep the world into pieces are decaying faster than ever.

dinner was absolutely fun, i spent the last of my cordobas on extra french fries for the table, and we were treated to another concert from whitney and deise...
dinner... the trip is winding down...

then went home, talked it out some more, made sure we were packed, and went to bed after pushing bedtime back as far as we could.

monday... travel day. managua to miami, then miami to o'hare. i did not document this part of the trip :) seeing as i spent the ENTIRE flights asleep, the first on eli's shoulder and the second with my head bopping against the window. the in-between time was so bittersweet, five of us were on the plane together and i was the first to catch my luggage and the first connecting flight to leave. so i had to go in a hurry... it pretty much sucked. i was so in love, and had to rush off, throwing my Love Yous and Talk to You Soons over my shoulder.

mom and my sisters were all there to get me at the airport - nice surprise, because i thought the girls couldn't make it - and decompressed all the way back downtown. went to bed. got up. went to work :)