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Lots To Say…

November 18, 2011

Oh my goodness! We are here and the day and time alludes me. I always know what time it is back at home but here… I feel like I am in another world. 🙂 The plane rides went well. The kids were great and were able to sleep pretty good, for the most part. I, on the other hand, could’t sleep, despite not sleeping at all the night before, and only getting 6 hours all together for the two previous nights. By the time we were on the last flight, from Korea to the Philippines, I was so delirious that I was falling asleep while trying to fill out the immigration papers. I had random lines all over the place and I was trying soooo hard to concentrate on what I was writing so they wouldn’t think I was crazy, or on something. When we landed, we spent an hour getting through immigration and customs and then we had a 6 hour truck drive to the village. We made it in the morning just in time for school.

Neely, our four year old daughter, wanted to start right away. She said hi to all the kids and wasn’t shy at all. One boy started crying pretty hard and when the teacher asked what was wrong, he said he was scared of Neely. At first, they would all sit and stare at her and touch her hair and touch her arm. I asked what Neely did when they do that and her teacher said she touches them back like she thinks it’s a game. She said that Neely cupped another little girl’s face in her hands and just smiled at her with her face close to hers. And the little girl, Angel, did the same to Neely and had the biggest smile on her face. Angel is five and her mother died after giving birth to her little brother, who also died less than a year later from diarrhea. Angels older sister died a few years back because she was mentally handicapped, therefore raped beaten, and starved to death. Angel is taken care of by her grandmother who is the local abortionist. I love this little girl and her family wants her to be adopted. I love all these children. They have big smiles and they giggle every time they see me. Everyone loves Neely… she is not afraid to touch or talk to anybody. She brings the women flowers and she even put some in one of the lady’s hair and told her she was pretty. Her name is Beth and she loved that Neely thought she was pretty. Her teacher also said that one time she was getting onto the kids in Tagalog (the national Filipino language), and Neely told her, “I don’t know what you are saying.” 🙂 That girl cracks me up! And she loves it here!!

Well, that is when she is not being stung by caterpillars… The day before yesterday, I was talking to one of the women under a tree when she yelled and knocked a caterpillar off. Then I saw where it stung her on her arm and there were all these little hairs stuck in her. She took her hair and brushed at them with her ponytail to get them out because she said you only push them in more if you try to pull them out. Yesterday, Neely touched a tree and her entire hand was covered in hairs. She of course screamed at the top of here lungs, causing everyone to look, and I started brushing away with my hair. It took about 30 minutes but it worked and they all came out. Pastor Ed, the head Pastor here, who is Filipino with a very strong accent, said with a smile, “Man Neely I didn’t know you have temper. You hurt my ears.” And I, in-turn, laughed pretty hard, out of sheer relief from momentary mother panic. (Mother panic is different than just panic alone, as I am sure all you moms out there know 🙂 ) Then, I was so thankful that God had prepared me already and I knew what to do. After seeing that, my other children vowed that they were never going near trees again. We’ll see how long that lasts.

As for the other kids, they are adjusting well and say that it is better than they expected. Riley, my oldest son, celebrated his 13th birthday yesterday and John got him a bow and arrow in town. It was made by mountain people who had to come down because of a volcano, and they are just squatting. That is what the villagers here are referred to, squatters, or displaced people, because they do not own the land, they just drifted and stayed. I met with the women’s group on Wednesday and they introduced themselves to me in the best English they could. Basically, their names and how many children they have. Then I spoke and cried the entire time… don’t really know why, but I did. Then, when I looked at a few of them, they had tears rolling down their cheeks as well. John and I are meeting with the youth on Saturday and hopefully our bodies get used to this heat and these hills. My mom would be proud. I have been drinking lots of water 🙂

Love to all and many many thanks to those of you, and there are so many, who have helped us on this journey and calling to serve God! We are humbled by your prayers and support.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. Jimmy Hoke permalink
    November 18, 2011 3:01 pm

    Hi Liam how are you? Sounds like you are having a good time. love,Jimmy

  2. Amy permalink
    November 18, 2011 6:16 pm

    WOW – Mandi! OH my goodness, I had to get up to get the box of kleenex! Thanks you for being so diligent in keeping the blog updated. Your an incredible mother, I have always been in awe of your mothering. The Holy Spirit is so evident in Neely – her tenderness towards others is just love. Remarkable how Neely was drawn to Angel. We will be praying for her. love you guys!

  3. Chena Meche permalink
    November 18, 2011 8:05 pm

    Needless to say, Mandi you have reduced me and Tommy to blubbering idiots!! ahahha!! I know you are very busy but please keep the blogs coming as we will now be living through them. Our hearts are there with you and I could just sweep Neely up in my arms and eat her up. Isn’t it just like our Lord and God to send a little girl from around the other side of the world to tell Beth how beautiful she is!! We were reading this morning in the Book of James what true religion is – Caring for widows and orphans. Isn’t it just like the Holy Spirit to send a woman from around the other side of the world to love a little orphan named Angel. We love you and our prayers are always with you. We know that God has great things in store for the Wilson Family. What a great adventure you are on!!
    Tell Riley “Happy Birthday!” from NiNi and Pop and to “be careful with that bow and arrow – don’t shoot your eye out!!” I would have loved to have been there with you that first morning when the sun came up and the kids seen the bays for the first time. I can imagine Kendall’s face – I see her – eyes and mouth wide open!! I can see Liam running all over checking everything out. I know they think they are in paradise. I bet he must have asked over and over again – “When can we go swimming??!!” How many shells have they collected? A dump truck full? I would love to be there with them exploring. I am in spirit!!!
    Tommy said to remind you to please take possession of all the big sea shells in the guest house. Those are now yours and very special to him. Keep them with you in whatever house you are staying in so they don’t get lost in the shuffle.
    Tommy did a great job preaching to the “Joytimers” yesterday. It was a great surprise and blessing to have Steve and Beverly Hebert show up. Tommy was like a proud son, showing off his parents. We also had a great turnout last Tuesday night at GriefShare. We scheduled a special night to present “Surviving the Holiday” at Elim church also – 11/29. It is a great feeling to be used of God here as we wait to hear what our next marching orders are.
    We look forward to getting emails from you – when you have the time and the internet. Give EVERYONE our love and plenty of kisses!! All our Love, Chena
    P.S. For God’s sake keep away from the trees!!!!

  4. November 19, 2011 1:18 pm

    Liam says hey! Tell your Mom and Dad hi. We miss you all. Blessings

  5. Loraine Millican permalink
    November 22, 2011 4:10 am

    Mandi, Dad and I enjoyed reading all the blogs. We pray for all of you daily. We will specifically pray for Riley’s injuries. I am sure it will be sore for a while. Remember vinegar will get rid of infection. I am so glad you are drinking more water. The reactions by the other children are interesting. You are moving us to smile and to tear up with your stories. Please continue to tell us all that you experience. We love you so very much! Mom and Dad

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