Friday, December 5, 2008

On the Third Day of Christmas, Children International gave to me...

Three sponsor visits (and maybe more)

I can recall more than once hearing my mother’s tired words during the holidays.

Worn from working six days a week, taking care of three boys and making sure my dad rose every morning at four so he could make it to work on time, she’d slump down in a rickety kitchen chair at the end of a long day and caution us about our Christmas expectations.

By then the cat was out of the bag on Mr. Claus so she’d shoot it to us straight. “It’s been a tough year,” she’d start. “Your father and I want you boys to have a wonderful Christmas but we don’t have a lot of money. There just won’t be many gifts under the tree this year.”

The thing is, I don’t recall ever being disappointed. There were always gifts to enjoy but, more importantly, I was thrilled to have special visitors whom we would see only during the holidays. People like my uncle Richard, who always had a tan, drove a big shiny car and laughed so loudly the windows would rattle. Or my cousin Lori, who sounded like an alien with her sweet Georgia drawl and East Coast staccato mixed together.

What they brought to our rural Missouri lives was a view of the world we never got to experience, which made the holidays all the more wonderful.

Of course, that’s also what a visit from you brings to your sponsored child. Not only do they get to meet a special friend they cherish, they get a glimpse of the world outside the walls of poverty that surround them. And it truly doesn’t matter what time of year it is. In fact, I think it’s safe to say that with you there, it’ll feel like Christmas whether it’s December or July.

So, in honor of the holiday, and all those people (you!), who bring joy, support and a different view of the world to sponsored kids all year long, I hope you’ll share with us your own thoughts on a visit you paid to your child.

Since this is the third day of Christmas, we’re shooting for three. But we’d be overjoyed to have many, many more.

Posted on behalf of Scott Cotter.


evergreen3 said...

Last year at this time I was in the Philippines volunteering at a surgical mission. I also had the opportunity to visit my sponsored children which at that time numbered only two (one in Legazpi City and one in Manila), but now I have seven there. I took each child, plus a few other children I had helped via the blog on a shopping trip and out to lunch. Each child pretty much clinged to me, would not let go of my hand, and had the biggest smiles all day long. When I visited the Community Center for a Christmas party I had dozens of children and parents all wanting to meet and talk to me making me feel special when in fact I felt they were much more important. It was an unforgettable experience for me and I'm sure for them.

amalia said...

i just returned from the DR Santiago....
i plan to go bk soon, I can only say its was Amazing and totally life changing for me ....
i hve tons of very special memories and fotos!!!