Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Uganda: How it all began

Last night I had my first Uganda Team Conference call.
I learned a few things:
  1. Conference calls are awkward. Especially among people who don’t know one another. I totally get the reason why we have to do it and am glad we have technology to do it, but it’s still awkward. Lots of awkward silence. And I’m not good with awkward silence.
  2. It looks like our current itinerary has us with a long layover in London. And our team leader lived there, so feels comfortable taking us sightseeing, with enough time to make our flight to Kampala. I’m beyond excited to see London and get a chance to practice my English accent! My kids say it awful, but I think they’re biased.
  3. I need to get a lot of shots. Sooner, rather than later. NOT looking forward to that. I’m not really into shots. But, I’m even less into yellow fever. So I need to make an appointment to get those shots. I guess that means I have to find a doctor? Shockingly enough, I haven’t been to the doctor since 2007. And my kids haven’t been…in a long time. I’m not going to lie; I’m really not into doctors.
This whole adventure is overwhelming right now. I actually woke up in the middle of the night panicked about being away from The Littles for 2 weeks. When we went to Mexico last year we left them for 5 (maybe 6) days and I wanted to rip the face off the 3 customs agents that – in my extremely humble and gentle opinion – were moving entirely too slow and inhibiting me from seeing my babies. Afterall, it wasn’t my fault that there were only 3 of them working and 300 of us waiting in line.


That’s my goal for the, ahem, year. I will learn to be gracious.


This all began quite simply. We have family night once a week and are using it to teach the kids about the world around them. In August I decided that I wanted to make them aware of what God says about widows, orphans and downtrodden. I started doing some research online, found some great organizations who were doing great work and we watched a video that explained how kids become orphans. And how in many countries it is a cycle that can be broken (When I have time, I’ll look for that video and post it.) Through my research I found World Orphan and through World Orphan I found Journey 117. They are who I’m doing the trip through. But at this time I didn’t know I was doing a trip.

I thought I was bringing some awareness with my kids about orphans.

It’s also through this research that I started to learn about human trafficking. I was shocked and horrified. That it happens, how often it happens, how easily it happens and that it is happening in my city. And that a significant amount of human trafficking happens to orphans.

I saw that my church was hosting a forum on human trafficking and went. Learned a ton. Found out about a Holiday Market where all of the items were free trade items and items made from people trying to escape human trafficking.

Went shopping, bought all the women in our family gifts from there and learned more about free trade and sex trafficking. Ways to help. Ways to get involved.

I decided to be a part of a group starting at my church to help bring awareness to human trafficking.

I asked God to break my heart for what breaks His.

And it was at this time that I saw a quick flash about Journey 117 hosting a trip to Uganda.

Sent JMad a text and told him I wanted to go to Africa.
He sent a text back and said, “when?”
I was sure I was to go.
JMad wasn’t so sure.
We prayed about it.
I wasn’t so sure I was going to go. JMad was sure I was supposed to go.

What if something happens to me or him or the kids while I’m gone? My Michele says to me, “If you are where God wants you to be, there is no safer place.” (Side note: seriously, is she amazing? Love her more than there are words!)


If you are where God wants you to be, there is no safer place.


I’m scared to leave my man and kids. I’m scared to see poverty. I’m scared to be changed. I’m scared to have my heart broken. I’m scared to leave my safe place of control and comfort. I’m scared to travel to the unknown. I’m scared of shots. I’m scared of strangers. I’m scared to do this without JMad to help me through it. I’m scared to rely on God. I’m scared…

What was romantic when it was a pipe dream is so scary when it’s reality.

So, one step at a time. I'm taking the advice I told my girls the other day: Do not swallow an almond whole. You will choke. One bite at a time.

First bite: shots!

1 comment:

Kellie said...

So excited for you! It will be life changing. And difficult. But you can do it. :)