Children… and other mood lifters

Getting back to Bangladesh… I realize I haven’t posted in awhile, and even longer since I posted on my experiences in B-desh. (I swear it’s going to be a while before I get through it all- if my posts are chronological, I’ve posted about experiences that happened in the first week and a half actually in the country).

I’ve been feeling pretty exhausted and down lately and I thought maybe making a post might help– if not then I’m one post further into my quest, and no worse off.

Children can be so full of energy and happiness that even when you are feeling your worst- you can’t help but admire them and try to join with them in the wonder of life. I had the privilege to be spending a lot of my time at a daycare- and while there were many kids there, there were a few who became very dear to me. I can’t say their real names because of privacy reasons but let’s call them: Pam, Sara, Rebecca, and Rachel. I miss them…

At this point in the trip, I was starting to question why I was there- what difference was anything making? I was struggling with my emotions, and of course, as I always do- trying to hide that fact. Unfortunately for my secretive habits (maybe fortunately for me- I’m still on the fence about that) I was part of a team, a team that made sure we all embraced vulnerability and stayed open with each other. Back to the kids- I walked in that morning and found a whole crowd of little faces smiling and laughing and I couldn’t help but smile and laugh a bit myself. I gave Pam a drawing I had made for her and she was extremely happy- up to this point Pam had been a little distant (which is fair enough given various circumstances) but it made me so happy to see that I was able to get through her shield. Sara also came running up to me and jumped into my arms- she had on a bright yellow dress and clung to me like a little lemur. Rebecca was quiet and didn’t say much (at any point during my time there) but she reminded me of a girl I knew back home- which made there to be (at least for me) an instant connection- she was my piece of home, half way around the world. Rachel was causing a bit of trouble this day (I got the sense that she had a bit of a impish personality- much like me at her age). Both Rachel and Pam, in their interactions with me and my teammate, found my weakness– tickling. They had me on the floor, muscles spasm-ing because of their quick fingers.

This day- because of the children became a turn-around point… it didn’t last forever but it got me out of the funk I had was in at the time.

In addition to all of this we saw another Caucasian on the street during our free time. Most of our team was Caucasian but it was different seeing someone we didn’t know- I had started to get used to not seeing people of my own ethnicity outside of our team so it surprised me. We had a short conversation and went our separate ways but it made me aware of just how much we stand out.

Another thing to add on- at the end of the day we found out that a fellow team member had stumbled upon a humorous mispronunciation– she was saying “donnopat” when she meant “donnobad”… so instead of saying “thank you” (donnobad) she was saying “holy fart” (donnopat)

A sneak peek at my next B-desh post: it wasn’t long before my self-doubt and generally negative feelings resurfaced. I love the Bengali people, it had nothing to do with them- and everything to do with my personal journey.

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