We Were Missed!

No matter how many times we go visit the children or how long it takes us to go back, we always receive a heartwarming welcome from them. It never gets old how excited they get to see us and how their little faces light up at the sight of our cars.

When we arrived I was surprised to see two of them, George and Ann, waiting for us outside on a bench near the house. As soon as I saw them, I quickly stopped the car and gave them a joyous hello. George’s face was as bright as the Sun, shocked to finally see me. It seemed they had been waiting for us, but also doubting my return.

It gets hard for them to develop close bonds with many of the volunteers and then have to say goodbye as they go back to their home countries or move on with their lives. I have no doubt it’s tough to have everyone in your life leave. I can see the reality of this in the way George told Ann and the rest of the children that I was back.

Apparently, the children had been saying I wasn’t returning. George kept insisting he knew I was. I quickly gave him a big hug and teared up, but tried to stay strong so the children wouldn’t feel concerned. I explained to them I was sick and had to recover before visiting again. Thankfully, after a few minutes of play and fun stories, they quickly forgot about my absence and received me as if I had never left.

Tori, a 20-year-old volunteer from America, was also with me. She also loves being with the children and felt saddened about how much they had missed me. She is very good at baking. She has her own bakery back in the US.

She was kind enough to make some delicious treats for the children and even gave them a few baking lessons while I translated for her. She is currently trying different ministries here in Georgia to see where God needs her the most. She was very excited to meet George and Ann, as well as the rest of the children. They always make sure everyone who visits them feels welcomed and make it very hard to say goodbye.

It was another memorable visit in which we both laughed, jumped, joked, cried, and finally praised God for the time spent. We always leave with a lesson, and today’s was without any doubt to love those who stick with us regardless of the hard times. Having someone to count on regardless of your flaws is a luxury many of us take for granted. The children remind us of this every time. Today it became very real to me how much they appreciate our visits and presence, and how much our absences can affect them. We love them, and while saying goodbye is always hard, we always know there is a next visit to look forward to.