Egypt ’07

Last night I finally bought a photo album to put all of my photos in from my trip to Egypt. Let me just say, I went to Egypt last year. Told you I’m not very crafty; not only that I’m a non-crafty procrastinator. Putting the photos in the album got me to thinking about that trip and how much it meant to me. So, for all you who don’t know, let me do a short recap.

Last July, one of the hottest months of the year in Egypt, I (Ash stayed home and took care of Ava- what a guy!) went to Egypt on a humanitarian aid trip. (Missions are illegal, so of course I didn’t go on a missions trip.) A group of friends got together and spent 10 days there meeting the poor, sick, and discouraged. We women had to wear long pants and long sleeved shirts all the time, while our male counterparts wore polo shirts. Fair? I think not. Needless to say, I was blessed to stay in a very nice hotel where I could take two mostly warm showers a day. I needed it to wash all the pollution out of my hair by the end of the day, not just because I had sweat like a pig. (Sidebar: pigs don’t really sweat but it sounds good.)

I took an Arabic class from November through May, so I could read and speak some by July. I can read anything in Arabic, I just don’t always know what I’m saying. Meaning, I am able to pronounce the words I read but I may not actually know the meaning of the word.

I met some of the MOST hospitable people in Egypt. I mean everyone was friendly for the most part. Of course there were a few that were none too happy to see Americans. However, if you said something to them in Arabic, I think they saw you were making an effort and they were much nicer.

Not only did we give out some much needed supplies to people, but we also were able to do the tourist-y thing and see the pyramids, take a dinner cruise on the Nile, etc. It was truly a once in a lifetime experience for me.

Here is a picture from my time there. In July of last year, we were still doing paperwork for our adoption and Ava was just turning one year old. In fact, I was gone for her actual birthday. We had  her party when I returned the week after she turned one. Anyway, we had been giving out some gift boxes to some less fortunate children at a Coptic church in Cairo. Afterward, somehow a spontaneous soccer game broke out in a marble-floored courtyard near where we had been. The kids were just people from the neighborhood who happened to be there and people from our group just joined in. Needless to say, I am not into running on hot marble, so I saw a little place serving lunch and went over just to see how they were cooking it. There were some some girls there who took to me, and a couple of ladies. I was missing my baby girl and this lady wanted me to hold her little boy. He was gorgeous. He was about 8 months old and he was a little guy. I held him for a little bit, and a friend who was with me took this picture. Afterward, I told the lady thank you and got ready to go. The woman asked me to take her son with me. She told me she has seven other kids and that I should take this baby so he could live in America with me. This was a huge dose of reality for me. And let me say how much I wanted to say “Great. Thanks. Bye!” As a mother of both a bio. baby and an adopted one, I cannot explain the emotion for me on both sides of that coin. Now when I see this picture, I always think of that moment just after it was taken.

As I hold Binh, I think about this woman in Egypt and Binh’s birthmom and what they might have in common, though all those thousands of miles apart. What all moms have in common, no matter where you live, whether you wear a head covering or not, rich or poor. We all want the very best for our children. We want them to be safe, have their bellies full, and to be loved. I never have to even think about if I can provide those basics of life to my little ones. I hear them complain that they want peanut butter and jelly instead of the turkey sandwich I made them or grape instead of apple juice. How blessed am I?


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Elaine
    Sep 09, 2008 @ 22:55:32

    Whether pigs sweat or not, I also sweat like a pig. I can’t imagine a mother just offering her child. What a blessing it is, to not be able to fathom the circumstances that would lead to that.


  2. Carissa
    Sep 10, 2008 @ 23:51:55

    I totally agree with Elaine…that story just makes me want to give that woman a hug.


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