Sick butterflies for sick kids – Karen, Kenya

Today was a good day. My finger is cut, I am covered in dishwater and my hairs a mess….but I am happy.

I woke up with a start (had bad dreams) having slept in….it was 820, so much for meditating altho I don`t know if I would have anyway. Maybe it`s a night thing…still remember feeling really sick and uncomfortable last time…sweaty and stuff…it wasn’t good at all. So I even missed morning prayer, which also was bad. I gobbled down my left over porridge and barely even tasted it. So I went to class but I was barely there still a little disturbed from the faint shadow of the nightmares. Talked with Janet a bit and she had noticed that I wasn`t myself and asked me if I was annoyed at someone. I blamed it on the wallet being stolen business. I called my bank at break and got a new card sent out. I felt a bit better after tea. I had a nice talk with Janet about how fun it would be to travel together.

Right after lunch I split and high tailed it to Karen. I mostly looked down at the dusty red dirt path as I was listening to my music. After spending a bit of time on the internet (reaaaaaal slow), I went to the provision store and bought heaps of yogurt and dairy…and a donut. The donut looked like the ones from home but sure didn`t taste like them. It was greasy and had a strange sour taste. At the cash register, I waited and waited for my credit card to come through. I was a bit concerned that maybe Stacy had cancelled the wrong card. I was getting a bit nervous because I was cutting it close to get back in time to go to the butterfly center. I rushed and made it back in quick altho I was all sweaty and red faced. So, we all held hands and made the 20 minute walk to the Butterfly Center. We sang old macdonald, old lady who swallowed a fly, 10 little monkeys and their favorite, the when I jump out of bed song. I walked with Ann who I am finding is quite moody. Then there is sweet Grace who I bumped into walking to Karen as she was walking back from school alone. She remembered my name.

There was a bit of an educational talk before we went into the room where the actual butterflies lived. When walked through the heavy plastic flaps, straight away I noticed two injured butterflies right in the entrance. The wings were so badly damaged I felt sad for them. Crippled. The guide lady let them walk onto her finger (they just crawled on with no prodding) and perched them up on a leaf higher up. I sat on a bench with Diane who had decided she was going to stick to me like glue. She sat quietly with me as we watch the hundreds of creatures flutter around.

Kids chasing them with their fingers outstretched, pleading with them to “come”. I was a little upset to see how many of them were damaged in poor condition. Sick butterflies for the sick kids. But they were still flying around doing their best. Survival. After Peter pushed Sammy into the water pond, a shaken Sammy clung to me with all he had. I spoke to him and he said he was feeling better altho his actions didn`t really show it. He seemed scared which made me feel even more protective and needed. Even at the playground outside while we were waiting for the schoolbus, Sammy wouldn`t go play with the others. I think back to the days back when I had bullies. I was terrified some days even to go to school or to walk home. No kid should feel unsafe. No one should feel unsafe. To be scared. Frightened. Worried. Nervous. Anxious. Fearful. Afraid. It drains vitality.

When we got back, I headed to the kitchen and asked if I could help. I proceeded to wash dishes (the biggest pots I have ever cleaned! Ugali pots), but cut my finger on the steel wool. I washed everything, buttered bread for the kids breakfast, then sorted beans with Dennis. As we ate dinner, my silly jokes made the sisters laugh their heads off. We were all in stitches.

I went to read but the kids were trying to watch a movie in the schoolroom. They couldn`t get the sound to work so I fiddled with it and voila! Magic touch. I went to a few other cottages to find some kids to read to. I walked in on poor little Faith crying so I picked her up. Simon from British Airways (a pilot who comes to spend time with the kids when he has a layover in Nairobi) was showing pictures to Laura from their trip to London. Laura was excited to show me a TV show called Carmela. Some soap or sitcom which had a girl sitting in front of a laptop typing…just as I am now. Weird. Now I am tired. But in a good way. I think I will sleep well tonight.

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