What can I say? It has been hard for me to blog lately as the feelings are too strong. One of my little boys said, "Miss Kim, when are you leaving?" I told him in a couple of weeks. He said, "I want to go with you, I know my mom would let me go with you." The really hard part of this is that I know his mom would let me take him to Mississippi with me. I let another little boy call tonya today. He was all grins but when he told her "I miss you" I thought I would lose it. You have to picture this. He is abused, neglected and all alone in the world. He connected with Tonya and Amrei, probably the only two people who have noticed him. He was on the phone and shaking his head to tonya's questions and did not realize that you have to talk. I wondered if he had ever had a phone call. One of my girls who has been the hardest to get close to - she gets angry and won't even look at me at times...she spent all day yesterday coming to find me. She wanted a picture of me and then would not leave me today to go back to class - just saying over and over - please don't leave me. Another little boy just keeps coming out of class every time I walk by and just grabs me and won't let go...every time he asks me how many days until I go home. I had one of the stronger ones just burst into tears today. It goes on and on...I blink back tears. I swallow hard to get rid of the lump in my throat and breathe. When I arrive home everyone asks me how my day was a t school. It reminds me of when I was a child welfare worker and I had a bad abuse case and when I got home I was asked - How was your day? I would just say - "fine". Social work is a profession in which you are always around people and you connect deeply with people but it also the one of the lonliest jobs as it is so hard to explain your days... so we just say it was a good day and go on - holding all of the pain and the memories. If we try to talk about it even in a general way to anyone who does not do this work we are rarely understood. I am thankful for my colleagues though - especially everyone who has come to help me here as I know we can talk about what goes on here and there will be those who understand.
When I was walking home today, I was so hot and I had sweated enough to drench my clothes several times. I smell horrible and look worse. I was thinking about how much I sweat here and don't even care. Other people don't care either. I walk for miles. It doesn't seem to be that far when I walk on the beach. I hear music from everywhere. Everyone says hi or buenas dias. One man told me "I hope you have a good day for all that is left of it." It is different as he really looked at me and meant it. So I come home and take a shower - have I mentioned that it is very hot here? I went to my local grocery and everyone knows me and tell me they are going to miss me. I got my hamburger from my street vendor - she only speaks spanish so she has helped me by speaking only spanish to me. When Greg was here he went to get hamburgers and forgot what I said and told her - it was for Kim and she knew what to leave off. I get teased a lot as i can't go anywhere without someone yeliing (mostly children) "Miss Kim". I fussed at a man at a bar the other day and 45 minutes later someone came to tell me about hearing about it. I sing Kareoke and I can't sing but the DJ knows what songs I want to sing and my friends at Kareoke sing with me even though I probably mess them up. I know all the bartenders and restaurant owners and waiters in my favorite places and I get hugs when I walk in. Sometimes I get the best piece of fish. The band members know me and know what songs I like. Coconut Leo came down out of his tree to talk to me today and he brings me coconuts and watches over me and my friends when we walk home at night - I give him comfort! I can see the ocean and millions of stars. I watch the greatest full moons and feel the coolest breeze at night. I can get fresh pineapple, bananas and papaya and all the shrimp and fish I can eat. Rice and beans and tortillas are always within reach. Everything is fresh - no preservatives. I had a coconut mojito with fresh coconut. I took a plane to the municipal airport - where else can I land one foot from the ocean? (I think these guys train on aircraft carriers.) I am sitting in my room and I can hear ladies' night at Wet Willies. I meet friends from all over the world. We talk about real stuff of life. What do I love about Belize? I guess I have gone on long enough. I am going to go sit on my veranda - maybe lay in my hammock and just listen, watch, feel the breeze, taste a Belikin and smell the air. Life is good.
love and miss you all.