Slapped awake

It was morning when I told my children. Told them that Jason was very very sick. That he might die.

They asked me, “Who??” and I told them, “Joshoni” which is how we all pronounced his name, there, in Bundibugyo.

Joshoni whose smile was so big and infectious it made me giggle just to look at him. Who never really spoke a sentence to me but who grinned out all his feelings, all his needs. Little Joshoni who was always finding himself in trouble. The firstborn son of his very proud Baba. He is four now and must be in Melen’s preschool, must be making his Daddy proud with his walking off to school each morning and his freshly shaved head.

It was lunchtime when I checked the blog again. And when I read the news my tears washed hot down my face and I sniffled back my sobs and I became useless for lunch and for real conversation. I told my children, who sat in shocked silence, their eyes wide and their faces white and their question, “what disease?” And I knew they were wondering if this could have killed them too and if it could kill their baby sister, the one who shares their heart in Uganda.

I felt slapped awake. Surprised into alertness from this dream-life I have been living in. This world of abundance and all-my-dreams-come-true. This world of summer and kittens and chances to do and try. And across the world, just on the inside of my heart, my friends are crying and a boy’s just-cold body is being held by his mother in a bed in the Christ School dorm-master’s house and I want to be there. Want to be THERE. With THEM. And want to be in Africa, doing something, anything of meaning, of purpose. That will bless those that I love.

Sometimes I live in a dream-world of my own design because I do not wish to face what I am longing for. What I am missing. I can not bear to think of what I am so far from being able to help.

Perhaps this is a very great selfishness.

I grieve Jason today. And I grieve for his Dad, K and for his mom too. And for the all the CSB community who lives, constantly, with threat of death and haunt of violence. And I grieve for my own good life and for all I long to see and do in this world. I grieve that I am grieving here.

Does that make any sense?

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