Derek writing here. Sunday was a hard day. We started off going to John Smiths church on Brickdam. John Smith was a missionary and abolitionist from England who came to Guyana to minister to the African slaves working on the sugar cane plantations. After a failed slave rebellion Smith was accused of inciting the rebellion and was thrown in prison. Under such harsh prison conditions, Smith died shortly there after and became another of Guyana’s martyrs. The folks there gave us a very warm welcome and everyone wanted to hear our story. We sang hymns for over and hour, including several written by John Newton (author of the hymn Amazing Grace). Something awesome about singing songs from a converted slave trader in a former slave colony in a loving church were racial tension no longer existed. Under normal circumstances it would have been a great morning but my mind was elsewhere.
It was hard to relax at the home that day, always thinking that we would have to leave soon. Still there was some great moments. Akeem was quite content to sit with me (the bag of oreo cookies helped) and I was able to make him laugh a bunch of times. He loved it when I chased him around the home and one time while I was distracted by several of the other kids, he ran down the stairs, snuck outside and made a bee line for the front gate! He thought it was hilarious that he had tricked us and laughed like a hyena while I dragged him back inside.
Kevon is a handsome seven year old at the home that spent alot of time with me for the last three days. He is quite sad most of the time as he has had a very traumatic short life. He also has some manageable health problems and almost no appetite. (probably part medical and part emotional) As a result he often feels sick and has very little energy, is very small for his age, and doesn’t speak often. On occasion he seems to forget his troubles and his real sweet character shines through. I would love to find this boy a home here in Ontario. Because of his age and his medical condition, no one has ever even inquired or shown interest in adopting him. Its a real trajedy. I think he would thrive in a new family and his new family would absolutely love him.
Leaving was excruciating. We hugged and kissed Akeem (Kevon too) gave him some ice cream and snuck out the door. My last view of him was seeing him busy eating his dessert and quite enjoying it. I’m very glad for that.
Back at the hotel, we had quite a flood of emotions. How are going to handle the next five months? How upset and confused is he going to be on Monday when we don’t show up? What will become of many of the other kids left behind? Our routine had always been to eat something, blog about our day and then veg in front of the tv. (funny thing is that we very rarely watch any television at home, but in Guyana,we were mentally exhausted at the end of the day and we watched something every night) Sunday night the only thing on was the Grammies, on every channel. While uber rich celebrities took turns massaging each others over inflated egos, I started to feel sick. Both the wealthy and the most disadvantaged were wasting there lives away for completely different reasons. What a contrast. Looking back, a lot of my life has been similar to the Hollywood types, just to a different degree. I had spent years obsessing over my house, my next camping trip, making money, etc. with little regard for what was happening in the rest of the world. I had my opinion about it, but it was all talk and no action. This whole process has changed me. This change is just one of the welcomed side effects to adding a new little boy, who we already love so much, to our family.