Friday, February 24, 2012
A third world morning
After weeks of worrying and stressing about creativity, I have finally turned off the computer and turned off my doubts and written something. Yesterday, I shared my rough draft with you about my morning. Today I'm sharing the other half of the story. This is a work of fiction. I have looked up no information. This is just from other true accounts I have read from various blogs. This is also a rough draft and by no means anything final.
Somewhere else in the world, in fact many somewheres, another mother awakes in the dark. There is no digital clock to wake her. It is her biological clock, the clock that tells her that her children need her. She doesn't worry about waking a husband for there is no husband. Maybe he abandoned her or maybe he is off somewhere far working to earn money that is so desperately needed. She pulls herself up, but not from a bed and there is no comforter from which she needs to disengage. She may have a light blanket on a mate on a dirt floor. Maybe that light blanket lays on a hard cot in their one room block house. Wherever she has slept, she pulls herself out of bed and wakes her children. The sun rises bringing light to the little home. She sends one child to the river or maybe the community water source for a bucket or two of water. Maybe the river is frozen or maybe the river is dirty. Maybe the community water source is dry. Maybe the community water source is dirty or clean or full or empty. Whatever it may look like, it is hard work to get water. That child dutifully carries the water back home.
While one child is gone, another begins to sweep away the debris that has gathered in their small home. They take turns going to a barren field several yards away to use the restroom. The family uses the small bucket to wash their face and teeth. There are no clothes to change because it isn't time to change into the other outfit. They use the water they just washed in to dip out a cup to mix with other grains creating a simple breakfast. They pray and thank God for the food they have knowing so many countrymen don't have it. This mother doesn't check her hair or make-up. She owns no mirror. She doesn't have make up or hair products. Maybe she worries about her appearance. Maybe she doesn't. Maybe she worries about her bent and calloused hands. Maybe she worries about gray hairs or wrinkles. After a simple small breakfast, she moves on with her day. The kids begin their long walk to school. They walk thankful to be going and excited to be learning. Maybe they walk through the dust and mud. Maybe they walk through the snow and the slush. Maybe they are barefoot. Maybe they have sandals. Maybe they have boots and coats. Maybe they only have one of those. Maybe they have uniforms to wear proudly. This mother worries as every mother does about what her children may face today and how they will react.
She watches them walk off and finishes readying herself for her day. Maybe she puts on a special bracelet or ring before leaving. Maybe she puts on nothing. Maybe she puts on a donated coat to protect herself from the cold. Maybe she has shoes. Maybe she doesn't. Maybe she leaves for her job. Maybe she stays home and tends the fields. Maybe people visit her as she earns her living. She carries no food with her on her travels today for she has nothing to bring. She knows she will not eat again today because she wants her children to have food tonight. As she goes on her travels today, she sings a song she learned from the travelling preacher. She quotes a few sentences of Scripture she learned from the same man years ago on his first visit. He shows them the Bible, but she doesn't know how to read. So she memorizes what she can. She prays for that man to return soon so he can teach her children and herself more. She prays to God for the people she knows and people she doesn't. She prays for people far away that send money used for school and food and doctors for her children. She prays for those at the community center who feed her kids. She prays for her family far away who are fighting for their lives against the soldiers and tribes that she ran from. She prays for her neighbors whose children don't get sponsored. She prays for all those less fortunate than herself. As she prays and walks, she covers the miles between home and work. She strengthens herself and she lightens her burdens, and she shares her hope with the world.