|Aren't they the cutest?!|
Just 11 days from today I will be in Guatemala!! I am so excited to return to the center and love on all the kids there! There are currently 86 children at the Malnutrition Center including 21 Canarios (Canaries/bed babies), 7 Delfines (Dolphins/ICU), 16 Conejitos (Bunnies/toddlers), 14 Pollitos (Chicks/toddlers), 16 Patos (Ducks/older boys), and 12 Ardillas (Squirrels/older girls). I will be working primarily with the Canarios and the Delfines, but I will definitely be spending time with all the other age groups as well :)
In the past 2 weeks, 22 children have gone home to their families. When I heard the names of those children that have left the center, my heart broke. I have known many of them since their days as little Canarios and I have loved watching them move through the Conejitos and Pollitos, and even into the Patos and Ardillas. I deeply love each and every one of those that left, but there are a few of them that I have been especially close to and it is so hard to know that when I return to the center they will not be there. I am happy that they have been reunited with their families, but I will miss them so much! I want to be there to protect them and make sure they get everything they need and just to give them hugs and kisses all the time. I want to read them stories and sing songs with them and let them play with my hair and climb all over me. I was talking about this with a fellow intern who is particularly close to one of the boys that left. This little boy has been at the center for over 4 years and it is so hard to see him leave; he is so special to so many people. But my friend reminded me that we are not the ones who make the difference in the lives of these kids, GOD IS and He will be there to protect them and watch over them even when we aren't. Don't get me wrong, we (interns/team members/nannies/translators/etc) are important; we are the ones who show God's love to these kids and we do make an impact. But GOD is the one who gets them healthy. GOD is the one who watches over them day and night. GOD is the whole reason that these precious children are even able to return home to be with their families who love them. Selfishly, I want them all to stay at the center so that I can spend time with them and play with them and love on them, but that is not what the center is intended to be. It is intended to be a place where sick children come to be made well again so that they may return to their families, the ones who love them enough to know that for a while the center is where they need to be, even though it breaks their hearts to let them go. Now it is our turn to love them enough to let them go and return to those loving families and to trust that God will protect them and keep them healthy so that they never have to be separated from their families again. Even though it breaks my heart to know that these kids that I so dearly love won't be at the center when I return and I may never see them again, I am so glad that God has healed them.
Please join me in praying for the children. For those that have gone home, pray that they remain healthy so that they never have to return to the center. And for those that remain at the center, pray that they will become healthy enough to be one of the children that we will miss. It's hard to let them go, but it is so amazing to know that they are finally healthy and happy and able to return home.
Also, I'd like to ask a special prayer request for Socelyn, one of the Pollitos. She is very sick and is in the hospital. Please pray for God to bring her back to health so that she may return to the center, and eventually return home.
If you want to keep up with what's going on in Guatemala (as well as the other ministries of Orphan's Heart) visit the Orphan's Heart Blog. It is a great way to remain connected to the center even when you can't be there in person.
Thank you guys for all your prayers and support!!