Friday, April 12, 2013
My house has become somewhat of a revolving door. I guess it has been a revolving door from the day that I stepped foot on Rwandan soil, for a good long haul. With so many girls that are in boarding school, it just kinda is how things work out. The dynamic of the house is constantly changing, the faces are contstantly changing. But lately, I have loved to have two girls who live in Kigali now come to visit. And one thing I have realized as the door swings back and forth, is the relationships that have been made over time.
Time. It really says alot. Where we spend our time. What thoughts occupy our time. Who occupies our time. When we have free time, where we desire to spend it. Time. There never seems to be enough. And when we want it to slow down, it seems to zoom faster. And when we want it to speed up, it comes to a screetching halt. Time can make some things that were once technicolor memories, fade into light greys. Sometimes it makes the heart grow fonder, and other times, it makes things slip away.
But as the door has swung this time. I realize the stories, the inside jokes, the memories we are starting to all share.
"Please, please, Amelie, I am satisified. Please. PLEASE. I am satified." Sometimes I used to tell her when she lived with me, and after I finished my plate, she would be right there with a spoon trying to heap more onto my plate. Now the girls and I joke about this nearly daily. As they will fold their arms over their plates, look at me and say "please....please Tina. I am satisified. PLEASE! I cannot eat no more. Please." And we all bust out laughing.
Or how if we are eating something sweet, or something everyone adores, and we will take our fork, and steal a peice from someone elses plate and exclaim "UMUGANDA!" Which then everyone falls into fits of laughter, or stealing spree's. And no one is upset, that two people just took a peice from you, because you just took a few from them as well. Umuganda is the day here were everyone works to help the community. And so we are just helping each other finish their meal. Umuganda, your fair game. Everyone is fair game.
When I walk into the orphanage and the toddlers see me, and they start to clap and say "Ego! Ego! Ego! Are you sure? Are you sure? Are you sure?" A silly random song I made up one day, and they all mimicked me. So as I ask them all "are you sure?" and say it really slow, so do they. Or if I hop on one foot asking "Are you sure?" so do they. I have no idea why this song and silly little motions caught on. But it did. And now it is routine for every visit down the road to the orphanage, till I am exhausted, and have run out of random motions I thought of off the top of my head.
Time. Time has bound me and so may here with so many sweet memories. Everyday new memories are made and concreted together. We have all shared in some pretty scary times. Weather that is being woken up at 3am by a house full of screaming girls, tears, half awake faces, me being the most scared of all. Because we had men with machetes who didn't seem to care to leave outside the house. The times we discuss our hopes, and ambitions. The times we are all laughing so hard, none of us can barely breath. Time. It comes with time.
The time here hasn't always been easy. I look back and want to laugh now, thinking of the first few weeks here. Of course then it was hard and scary and ground shaking to me, when theives showed up. But after time, I remember the last time in the old house, just laying in my bed, listening to the guards scuffle with the thieves outside, pressing buttons on my cell phone to keep a small bit of light in my room. And kept dozing off, while I heard the scuffling. Soon, it became something that didn't scare me so much anymore. Time can callous you to things too. Sometimes to things you should not be callous too.
Sometimes time it blends a fine line between brave and crazy.
And now time itself can cause my eyes to mist up. To see the pictures of the kids, who are growing up back home. To see the milestones, the weddings, the losses. And to be so far away in the midst of it all. The lonesomeness for my friends back home. Time itself has become sometimes cause for some very ugly cries here.
There really isn't a whole lot of time, is there? Whe you think of it. None of us really knows how much we have here on earth. Eternity, the next life, it never ends. When our time here is done, we will find ourselves in a place not restricted by time. No beginning and no end. I know that is where my focus should be the majority of the time. Like presenting a kid with "You can go play in the sand box now, or have the entire beach next week." We are so apt to want the sandbox. We want it now. We want what we want, when we want it, and how we want it. "Do you want a peice of candy now, or do you want a candy store next month?" Why do we often opt for the few peices of candy now. My heart so longs for the day that God will right every wrong, when there will be no more tears, when for eternity we will worship him. But I must admit, so many times, I am sitting there in the sandbox, because I could not wait for something more lasting, something more meaningful, something with eternal value. Time, its hard to wait sometimes.
Kids seem to grow up too fast, the desert times seem too long, and the mountain top times seem to slip through our fingers. Time can callous us, time can heal us, time can make your eyes sting with tears, and time can concrete relationships. Time........ it’s going by far too quickly.
We have seminars on time management, aimed at helping us to organize our time. But really, once we know what our priorities are, then time management shouldn’t really be the issue. We all have the people and places we regret we did not invest more of our time in or at.
Time, can scream of our affection. Esp for someone like me. If you have heard of the love languages, mine is quality time. Time, just to spend some time with a friend chatting, really chatting, fills my love tank up. I had a friend who had a house full of kids, and always a million things to do. Often when she would fold laundry while the children napped, we would sit on the couch and chat. Fold and talk. And that meant more to me than a million dollars. Time, to someone like me is golden.
Lots of love from Rwanda,