good-bye

(Anika and I eat strawberries & cream at King’s Cliff one of my last nights in Ooty)

 

It’s weird to say good-bye to people you will probably never see again.

Certainly I wouldn’t mind if my path crossed with the other FF staff or the girls, but it’s not too likely. In case I hadn’t mentioned before- I love FF. Really, FF is such a great organization with amazing heart, and made up of a wonderful staff with such a love for Jesus. I so appreciate FF, not only for what they do, but who they are.

[ I should probably be sleeping as I’m waking up at 5:30am for the car ride to Coimbatore airport to fly to Delhi. But, though I’m not staying up late packing like I many times have— I know I will sleep better having written this first. ]

Today was my last day here in Ooty. I went to staff prayer this morning, had lunch at Anik’s family’s house (the aftercare director) with Anika (other volunteer), Anne (staff), and Yuimi (staff). The food was delicious and it was great to spend some time laughing and chatting with one another. Really, it’s always nice to get to do because so much of our time together besides prayer is dealing with conflicts etc. After lunch, I finished all of my packing. Yay! Then went to the Palm’s (Tarrah and Jayson are FFers) for our usual Thursday night dinner. The food was good (of course) and we got to talk, help the kids with prep (homework), and laugh over tea and chocolates. It was lovely. I love the Palm’s; they are such assets to FF.

Yesterday was my last day with the girls. Tuesday they were really giving me a hard time about leaving, but Yesterday they were quiet (except for the improptu dancing 🙂 ). Teacher had them share with me whatever they wanted— things they were thankful to me for, admired about me, or anything else they wanted to tell me. I also shared a little with them. Overall it was really sweet and I even saw a few breakthroughs even with what they said and admitted. (woo hoo!) They thanked me for everything like the basics of coming, teaching, doing Bible studies etc with them to smiling and asking how they were, to… encouraging them even though “I gave you so much trouble.” {breakthrough! admitting this} Faith* said, “… How will I do my work without Didi? I’m like a little baby and Didi is my big sister.” {A very honest statement, but exactly what I want to see change her—- independence!}

I went with the girls to the garden the last little while before lunch. Hope* got on the swing and was… pumping her legs! HA! (The story I shared before was specifically about Faith* but I hadn’t seen the other girls “pump” their legs either.) From the swing Hope* opened up to about having been married. She was married at 16 (for only one year), it must be right after that she went to the brothel. She really has been quiet about her past, but considering she is the most recently rescued it makes since. Witnessing this breakthrough in openness right before leaving is something I am so thankful for.

Wednesdays are staff lunch days where everyone that can comes to Smyrna and we all eat with the girls together. So, it was a birthday celebration for the recent birthdays and a farewell to me. We ate cake, Indian sweets, and chips )Indians like their sweet and salty together). It was nice. I said some good-byes to FF staff them. After lunch, was our usual staff meeting and prayer time for the aftercare. We had to talk over some recent conflicts with the girls and we heard about some dis-heartening news. If you recall, we had two of our girls (with children) move on FF that moved together to a different part of India… Well, apparently, one of them, Harmony* has left for sometime with her husband or ex-husband (not sure if they are still married or not). Anyway, this is not a good thing and thus something for us to be praying about.

In other news, Zoe* is now considering to Bible school for one year in Delhi after graduating from FF’s program this year. This is exciting news! It seems she is really serious about it. I am so happy to hear of this, and before my departure because this is a huge step for her. Faith* even shared that after graduating she wants to work with handicap children! Ha! The girls sometimes help with horse therapy for physically challenged kids and it’s likely the idea came from this. I think it is a beautiful idea! Oh, and she has opened up in recent weeks to some of the other staff and having been married and having a child! When she shared with me she seemed dead against anyone besides me knowing, but this openness is fantastic!

Right before leaving Smyrna yesterday, I took the girls to the garden to pray with them. It was great. I got to express my love for them and encourage them in their futures. Zoe* even gave me a card she wrote! (Kind of surprising from her. The other two girls gave me gifts at other times.) It was surreal to say good-bye. They told me they will call me in America. 🙂

So, all in all besides some unnecessary and frustrating conflicts between the girls, my last days with them were good.

Leaving Ooty seems strange, three months did seem to go by fast. I am thrilled to be going to Delhi for the weekend though! I’m so blessed. God is so good. Monday morning I fly back to the states. It will seem like the longest day ever considering I will flying for 20 hours and still be arriving on Monday in CA. Prayers for travel, jet lag, and transition to American life are appreciated. 🙂 Thank you all so much for you support, encouragement, and prayers. I’ve felt them.

 

(Galatians 6:9 painted in the staff room at Smyrna)

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About pinkdor

I'm drawn to the gravity of love. View all posts by pinkdor

2 responses to “good-bye

  • upsidedownbethlehem

    It is funny how the phrase “good-bye” gives its own “good” expectancy. Your legacy in that place will live on into eternity. You have made a massive impact.

    By the way, it turned out one of the workers I met on my Asia trip lived in Ooty 18 years! He’s English, but grew up there.

    connections! yeah Holy Spirit! global wildfire!

  • pinkdor

    No way! Did he happen to go to Hebron School?

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