Saturday, January 23, 2010

For the love

I am in a very reflective mood today. I am sorting out my feelings about so many things. I feel like I am torn between two worlds. I love both. I think this is why I sing the song "Which Bridge to Cross and Which Bridge to Burn" - I do have two loves in my life now. I love my family, friends and students here. I love people in Belize and the work that I am being allowed to do there. I have the added bonus of having someone there who loves me as the most important person in his life. I know God is leading me there. I am as patient as I can be in waiting for the right time but at the same time it is very hard to think about living away form my children and everyone here. I have always wondered how people in the Bible could just pick up and go where they were led. Then I understand the pull (or push) that God gives...many times I have had to face major change and I was afraid but I have found that if I pay attention to God's will for me - it always works out. I know this, but knowing doesn't make it that much easier. Paying attention to what is of God and not following what people or the devil would have in your life is our struggle. Of course it is. I just want to follow God's will.

I think what I was trying to say in my last post was that I am needed more in Belize than I am here. I need my friends here. I need my children and my family. I need my job here and the students. It is not about what I need though...never is. I am content with this - I want to be where (and with whom) I am needed the most. I am happy in a deep contented, joyous way that is fueled through the love of others and when I am able to love others. Corn? Sappy? well, so be it.

I saw a rainbow from the plane leaving San Pedro - over the ocean - just for a few moments but it was bright and beautiful. Everytime I am in my deepest sorrow and pain and not knowing what to do....God sends me my rainbow. Most of the time it is not even raining....rainbows in a clear blue sky. Truly, God is awesome.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

I am home.

It is so hard to leave Belize. I hope this does not make my friends and family in the U.S. feel bad. I do miss you all when I am there. I just like the life I live there better. I know that sounds like I am contradicting myself and I can't explain it very well. Here - it seems like everyone in my life has other people who are most important to them...spouses, children, friends, relatives...I always feel like I am just a person who is on the fringe of other people's lives and I am not really the most important person to anyone here. It is ok and the people who are important - need to be and I love my friends and family but I feel alone most of the time. I just don't feel like that in Belize...anyway, yes, I am home.

I also like the laid back lifestyle - this pressure here is too much. I have worked 12 hours today and what to show? I always feel like my life has a purpose - daily in Belize.

The last few days in Belize was overwhelming and fantastic. We had a meeting with 90 people from San Mateo and I truly believe we will be building roads in San Mateo - thanks to the Ole Miss students! We will be trying to raise the money for sand and gravel, etc. Anyone out there that wants to be a part of this - donations or labor - please let me know! Get your contacts the info too!

well, at least I am going back to Belize on Feb. 3 - I can hold it together until then!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Four days flew by.....

I cannot believe the time is going so fast. I have been at the school four days. I fell right in to the flow of things like I was never even gone. Felt more like I had been gone for a sick day or something. The children are a little taller and some look like they grew up but other than that I am just here again. I love these children. I have gotten notes from children asking me to please not forget them. They have loved the students and the students have been really great in working with them and the community. The students are doing home visits with the children they worked with and it is going very well. The Ole Miss students are a little tired though....tomorrow we are takinga trip to the mainland. Then it is our last weekend and yes, I am sad already.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Roads in San Mateo!

2Keep the faith and put away the fear of failure. The community meeting on Saturday night had 23 people!! They were different people that the original 6 that met. It was very cold, rainy and windy but people still came to a meeting that was held underneath a lean-to (outside). The community members agreed that the roads would only be built if they build them. They were all willing to work and decided to create a committee to guide the work. The Belizean people and especially the people of San Mateo are so strong and such hard workers! They were very passionate about wanting the roads and being able to accomplish the work with help in buying the sand, gravel, gas for boats and shovels. They will meet again on Saturday night at 7 p.m. One member is to contact the Area Representative so they can work together on the plan. The materials will be bought directly and the people of the community will do the work. They talked some about where the road could be built.

I went to church in San Mateo on Sunday morning. It was great experience and it was truly the right thing to do and the right place and the right time.

At school today!!!!!!!!!I have been seeing the smiling faces!!!!!!!

Friday, January 8, 2010

golf cart touring!

This is a hard experience to describe. Touring on golf carts on rain soaked - pot holed - almost a lake in the middle of the road - muddy roads - ask Mary Claire! I think she got splattered! The students saw the north end and the south end and all stopping points in between. they organized a mainland tour with Marlon in which they will see the zoo, go cave tubing, and see a Maya ruin. the downside - we have to get up and be at the boat at 6 am on Sunday morning. This is after going snorkeling and to Caye Caulker on Saturday all day and running a community meeting on Saturday night at 7 p.m. They also have a meet the teacher's dinner at 6 pm on Sunday night.

The students listened to the Area Representative yesterdya morning and asked some very good questions. I sent one student out into the community to see where we would be meeting on Saturday night. The message was - the upstairs of the purple house and "even though there are no lights now - there will be by Saturday night and tell Ms. Kim to stop worrying - we got it covered." The students are doing such a great job of including the families of San Mateo is major planning and organization. I am so impressed by their understanding of working in a culture that is very different from their own and in their community organization skills. They have a newspaper representative involved in their work. The people are amazed that they have the trust of the community members to even show up at a meeting.

The roads just have to be built. No more waiting around for the government. The government does not have the money -so other means must be discovered. The situation is dangerous to so many people and especially the children. The bridges are not safe and the water below is contaminated with who knows what. That is all.

We are in the paper - front page. Going to the store to buy some! I cannot describe the excitement and passion and how contagious it is! My whole mind and body is just alive with the possibilities that the students are creating and I keep wondering what all they are capable of regarding making a difference to the people of San Mateo.

Did I mention?- I am so happy! Of course - relaxation involves football games and to have balance in our lives!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Yes, we are in Belize!

First, I apologize for those of you anxiously awaiting news from Belize. I have not had internet access in my condo. I have tried to make time to be on the internet in other places but we have been very busy. Right away, we were invited to New Year's dinner at a family home in San Mateo. The students crossed the "London Bridges" for the first time but were rewarded with an awesome dinner and lots of family fun - inlcuding jump rope and punta dance lessons. The students were given a wealth of information from the father in the family about the living conditions in San Mateo and what has been attempted in the way of change. This has ignited a spark in the Ole Miss students. In three days of actual work in the community they have talked to many people - just introducing themselves and sitting on porches and in sparsley furnished rooms and finding out what life is like in San Mateo. They have organized a first community meeting for this afternoon and hopefully community leaders will come at 4 p.m. The newspaper came this morning to interview them about the eyeglass donation and the fundraising for eyeglases and the students told of their work in the community. The reported was very impressed and is retunring this pm for the community meeting.

Ole Miss professors - you would be very proud of the knowledge and skills that the students are displaying regarding community organization and empowering the comunity members. They are very passionate and are doing al lthe right things in a very guarded and non-trusting community. Be proud!!!

Trisha volunteered all day Monday with Dr. Danny the OB-GYN. She continues to go early every morning to help.

It was a little cold the last two days. I know you do not want to hear it compared to the cold you are having. The sun is out today! We are planning a tour on golf carts (of the island) tomorrow! More later!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The night before

The anticipation is all encompassing. There is no way my mind can be on anything else but Belize. Up until this time, I was able to pay attention to everyone else and meet the needs of everyone in my life. It gets to the less than 12 hours until I get on a plane to begin the journey back to Belize and there is no way I can talk about anything but going to Belize. I am so excited. I have said those four words so many times today. I told Courtney (our love for Belize has bonded us) that I would have no words if I did not have "I am so excited." What other words are there to describe this feeling?

I recently attended a conference and one of the speakers said that we should put ourselves in the place in which we we can reach our greatest potential. I think I am the best person I can be in Belize. I am able to give. My skills and talents are needed. I am validated as a worthwhile person. I have thought about why do I feel this so strong in Belize and why can't I accomplish this at home? I have some answers - I think - I would rather talk about them than write them in a blog - so find me and we can have a conversation.

That's another thing - there seems to be time for regular conversations in Belize - not just facebook, email, text and telephone - real face-to-face meaningful, caring conversations about whatever. I need this.

One of my students has never been on a plane or seen the ocean - anywhere. I have to be with her when she sees the ocean for the first time. I am more excited for her than I am for myself! There was a commercial on tv a moment ago that talked about - you are about to have a life changing experience - how cool is it that I can enable the students on this trip to have life changing experiences?! Well, that is my goal....we will see if it is accomplished - I really just set the wheels in motion - the people of San Pedro will do the rest!