Throwing Myself Into Life

Over the past 30 hours…

– I’ve had 1:1 conversations with adolescent girls about… living with HIV… family being killed by Kony’s army up north… parents dying and grandparents not wanting her… a visit from her father’s soul…

– I’ve heard her wisdom of how working together creates something better; her dream of being a heart surgeon; her poem about how she despises and celebrates menstruation; their songs about the power of being a girl…

– We’ve done more photo shoots for several girls that required the art of inviting them to ‘be free’ amidst a myriad of distractions all around (from friends to traffic to locals curious about what we were up to)…

– I’ve participated in an hour-long tweet chat with the Girl Up Initiative Uganda team about ending gender based violence in education…

– I’ve received the gifts of hearing Coach Achom Marion sing, reading an inspiring quote from Coach Choli Caroline, sugar cane from Uncle Mike, and so many other small simple heartfilling moments being with the team…

– I’ve reunited with the kids on my street, handed out pages for drawing and coloring, received drawings of helicopters, cars and houses, taught them a song the team taught me and delivered and received countless hugs, high-5’s, smiles and ‘sula bulungi’s’ (good evening)…

– I’ve seen a turkey in the street, eaten goat, walked alongside longhorn cows, and watched as Vianey untethered his goats to bring them in for the night…

I’m full. I’m happy. I’m tired. I’m grateful. This is my life right now and I’m present to it all knowing there will come a day when this… this place and these people in these daily interactions… will not be my life.

My introverted self is stretching to receive and enjoy the richness of all these relationships and interactions.

My introverted self is also calling out for a weekend away by myself where I will do nothing but gaze at the river flowing by. (Don’t worry, Self… I hear you and that’s coming.)

I’ve thrown myself into life, and together, we’re creating magic.


“The only way that we can live is if we grow.

The only way that we can grow is if we change.

The only way that we can change is if we learn.

The only way we can learn is if we are exposed.

And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open.

Do it.

Throw yourself.”

C. JoyBell

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