This weekend I will be a vender in Boerne selling our crafts from Uganda at the Saturday market. This is a big event for us to be able to share the story of Kirabo Seeds with our fellow Texans. I made a 20X30 collage poster (from Costco for less than ten dollars!) of all our children and staff using the portraits I took of them when I visited in January. This poster has become “homework” for Kira. She squats in front of it and studies the faces. She remembers them all but now she is determined to know their names. They look like her. And that must give her some wonder in her mind. She remembers playing at their home so she asks me, “I go see them?”
How do you explain to a three year old the concept of how far away Africa is from Texas? She loves to go on an airplane so I explained we have to ride three planes to get to Uganda. That is a word she hears a lot in our home and in our life, Uganda. For the first time I heard her say it, but it sounded like this, “ganda”. She likes to practice being me so she gives speeches. (How horrifying for me to think that’s how I appear to her!) She stands on the ledge in my office and talks endlessly gesturing with her hands, pausing to say, “so” as she puts a hand on her tilted hip and lifts the other in question. Occasionally she will say, “look at me when I talk to you,” to which I grin and reply ok. This time she got stern with me and said, “no you say ‘yes sir to Kija”, I stifled a laugh and corrected her, “yes maam to Kija”. (obviously we are teaching her southern manners) She thought about it and said it herself. Her speech used the word “ganda” many many times and I heard the names of most of the children in our home. She can’t say Kira so she calls herself Kija, which is so cute, we often call her Kija ourselves. I am crazy about her and this new ability to communicate her lively imagination, it is a source of high entertainment in our home. She is also showing me how much more I can teach her by what she understands.
I wish I could comprehend how this all makes sense to her. The sandals are arriving and so are the raincoats we ordered for the children, and Kira asks without a prompt, “are these for the children in Ganda?” When piles of new books are on the ledge in my office she asks, “for Kija?” I shake my head, “no for the children.” She tilts her head, “Ok, can I see?” Then she goes through them one by one but does not take them to her own collection. She is learning to say, “you are OUR mama and she names her brothers.” Soon she will understand that the children in our home also think of me as mama so she will learn they are her family too. She will grow up with them. I am so humbled and grateful that she has this opportunity to know her culture. The whole concept of her story as God planned it for her is beautiful and I hope she celebrates it. I hope understanding it will give her more reason to blossom with the fragrance of Christ as she lives a long life walking with Him.
I believe every child on this earth is a wonderful little being worthy of being handled with care and known intimately with a great love. When I look into the eyes of a child my heart flutters. I marvel at God’s design for humanity. I am moved to realize the potential and purity in a child. More than anything on this earth (yes more than horses) I am driven to use all I have to improve the lives of children. They should not have to suffer. Their vulnerability should guarantee them protection not give them the status of victim. I can only hope and pray more people will reach out to the most vulnerable children on this earth. One person at a time can change the world. I am learning when I spend myself to help children just to serve and not to expect anything for myself, it changes who I am. It gives life meaning and purpose. It puts in order a reason for being here.
No member of our family can really remember our life without Kira. She’s large and in charge for a little person. We all have a fierce love for her and enjoy the feminine edge she brings to our home. She can’t leave the house without her purse. She gets in her cozy coupe and says, “I be right back, I’m going to pick up the boys.” After dinner while we all sit and talk about faith and life she goes to her play kitchen and fixes us all desert with tea. She brings a tray carefully arranged and serves us with a face full of love and hope to see us enjoy our treat. We exaggerate our joy and it thrills her. She lives for the opportunity to go see Bear and ride him. She is all about the trot and asks when she can jump. Her bedtime routine belongs to daddy and he often falls asleep with her in his arms. She really is our princess and that makes me feel like a Queen. Adoption later in life when we should have been finished raising children is wonderful. She adds all the glitter and sparkle our family was missing. What a relief we put our head down and followed God into this crazy journey of adoption in our forties. It would have been our tragedy to miss all of this.
If I could choose a bible verse for her this is one of them, “And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
My hope and ambition is for her to know what God has done for her.