Morgan’s Diary- May 1, 2016
All eight of the girl’s beds were filled, so Thandiwe and I slept in the boys room. I came into the room after everyone had fallen asleep, and could see one boy sleeping and cuddling the huge teddy bear Max, that Sophie had gotten for the kids. It was very sweet to see. I slept well, as I was exhausted. The boys were up at 5:30 again, but I tried to sleep in a bit longer as I knew we had a long car ride back to Kathmandu.
After getting packed, Thandiwe held a workshop with all of the children. She presented the Star that they use in Star for Life. Each part of the star is a different color and represents a different message.
Yellow- I go for my dreams
Red- I live healthy
Black- I decide
Green- I am committed
Blue- I make it possible
Each of the children got a piece of paper and a marker so that they could write down their dreams, and the steps they were going to do to achieve their dream. We were fortunate to have Karma translate for us. Not every child could understand english, or exactly what Thandiwe was saying, until they heard it in Nepali, but they all listened attentively, and were so engaged in what she was saying. They were like sponges, soaking up every last word Thandiwe was saying. It was truly inspiring to see them all so focused, and engaged with their own dreams and futures. After the workshop, I went and packed a little and I had one boy come up to me with his paper that he wrote his dream on, and explained his dream, and his well written out schedule he made, to achieve his goal. I had to hold back the tears, because this young boy really wanted to make the best with his future, and I could tell he is so committed to doing so. I know that Home of Hope will give him that chance to do great in his future.
Both 4×4 cars arrived to take us and the Swedish group back to Kathmandu. It was very bittersweet to leave with many mixed emotions. I was ready to leave, and let the children, Shyam and Asha get settled into a daily routine, but on the other hand I had formed such strong bonds with these children in such a short time. I remember when my sister gave birth, and I could see the immediate bond, and eternal love between child and mother. I felt like this the minute I met each child. I had this unconditional love for each one of them that I did not expect to have so strong. I went into the girls room, and started to say goodbye to each of them, and I started to cry. They told me not to cry. They were not tears of sadness, simply tears of joy and happiness for each one of them. I knew I was leaving them in best hands of Shyam and Asha. So many of the kids clung to me as we walked outside to say our final goodbyes. We all took pictures together with the kids. Now came the time for final goodbyes. I spoke to older kids and told them to take care of the younger ones, to clean up and help Asha and Shyam around the house. I said that they need to study very hard to achieve their dreams, and could someday fly to either Sweden or Canada and see me! They all pinky promised me they would study as hard as they could. Sophie had so many tears in her eyes as she hugged each child. As did I, and the kids. All of the kids give the best hugs, something I will miss for awhile, as I have hugged so many kids so many times in two days. I know that this is not a goodbye, but simply a see you later, as I will be traveling back many times a year as a continuous volunteer for the Lööf Foundation.
We started our journey down the mountain, and it was so bumpy. I got car sick again, and took some motion sickness pills which knocked me out. I was so surprised I slept through so many bumps. We had two children that we had to take back to Kathmandu with us who slept the majority of the way in the back. I couldn’t understand how they could sleep with such bumpy roads, but this route is something they are probably used to. During our drive, we got stuck in traffic for about 20-30 min. The boy in the back of the car translated for us and told us that there was a car accident, and many people had died. Eventually traffic moved along, and I could not see anything in the road. Luckily we made it back to Kathmandu safe and sound!
I had the great pleasure of being able to visit a girl’s orphanage in Kathmandu who was started by a wonderful woman I met at the Monastery, Eva. I got introduced to many of her girls, and they had great english! There are 14 girls who live there with a house father, and house mother. I then had some time to talk with Eva, who gave me great wisdom and knowledge about taking care of an orphanage. I am so grateful for her time, as she has so many projects on the go, and is a very busy woman. I so much admire her, and her drive. I took about four pages of notes, and hope that I can take her experiences, and learn from them, and help Home of Hope run as smoothly as possible.
Tomorrow, we are headed back to Sweden. I am so grateful for the opportunity to embark on this adventure, and be part of such a great celebration on Saturday. A huge thank you to Sophie for giving me this opportunity. This was a trip of a life time. I have learned so much, made so many contacts, experienced so much, and have seen so many thing I would have never dreamed of. I have such a big spot in my heart for all of the children in Home of Hope, and cannot wait to see them again in the future! Many thanks!