Sunday, April 4, 2010


I can't sleep. So many things are running through my mind. I'm tired but its just one of those nights you try as hard as you can but you just don't get past that brink of wakefullness into what you so wish would be sleep. So here i sit. I was thinking while laying in my bed on the roof of the Tambacounda regional house about the kids, my brothers and sisters, in my village. They are wonderful and annoying, precious and dirty, and i love them. How much i love them was evident to me in random moments throughout the week. The time after time my two year old brother dachaba continued his new favorite game of knocking on my door saying "kon kon" (like knock knock), me saying "entre" (enter), him rushing in with a huge smile on his face ready to dance to my clapping hands. Over and over and over again. It didn't get old. Or the many times my little four year old sister Senne would just come into my room and chat about the random things that were on her mind, that might have just occurred, that she saw maybe a year ago, anything really. The concentration and creativity of my little 6 year old brother Issa drawing with my colored pencils in a batman coloring book (not knowing what it is he is coloring but loving that he can) or creating miniature tam tams in the middle of my compound with sheets of plastic, metal wire, and tin cans. The spontaneity of my little sister Haby who says most things on her mind, is a drama queen, loves to sing and dance and probably has less fear than I do. I could go on. So many times I have wished to bottle little moments up so I can keep them and take them out later. I love them.
I think I love them (the kids and the moments themselves) because they show how present they are, how unafraid they are of what others will think of them, how they aren't trying to prove themselves but are simply being. They love certain things; they dont others; and thats ok. They throw it all out there (literally-I have a lil brother who is naked probably 90% of every day) and aren't assuming of what others will do or say. They just are. And its refreshing and frustrating. I love it but just can't seem to get there myself. I dont know if its me "growing up" and taking on those responsibilities of an adult or me being in a culture I'm not from and still learning about. Or maybe even a step in life I have to accept and move past-but lets hope not.
Those kids and their daily habits and movements are inspirational to me. The everyday turns into something so much more. It helps me to live. It helps me to take a deep breath and relax. It helps me enjoy things like funny faces, little games, random thoughts. And hopefully it continues to change me so I can be more childlike. Funny I spent so much time wanting to grow up to live an independent life. Here it is. And I feel like I tried to live up to what I thought was important because it was important to the culture, the people, the education that I was a part of. Then you see a little kid running around playing with rocks and marbles outside in his birthday suit and you hunger for a little piece of that freedom.
Happy Easter everyone. Take the time to experience a little bit of freedom. Maybe not exactly like my little naked brother but you get the drift.

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