(All names in this blog have been changed. The stories are true.)
After years of working with children who’ve been orphaned and abandoned, if you’re not careful, you can sometimes become immune to the nightmarish history so many children have. It’s not that one stops caring; emotionally shutting down is just a survival mechanism. Week after week, it’s hard to listen to the horrific stories, see the physical bruises and broken bones, and walk with children as the emotional wounds come to the surface.
There will always be orphaned and abandoned children; some things never change. There will always be families pushed to the breaking point. We live in a broken world with broken people, it’s been this way for a very long time, and nothing indicates humanity is getting any better. What does change is the magnitude and number of children in need. As cold as this sounds, it’s a numbers game, the more families are under pressure, the more families collapse. When people are under pressure, children become victims. With the current COVID situation, we see the number of children in extreme danger growing exponentially.
Over the years, I like to think I’ve become a patient man, my wife might disagree, but I still like to believe that I’ve mellowed. A few comments can still get me angry to the point that I reach for my blood pressure meds: “It’s good enough for Mexico,” or the more offensive “It’s good enough for an orphanage.” Or the similar thought process that’s the absolute most offensive: “It’s good enough for orphans.” There are times that behind my smiling facade, I want to punch someone.
Everyone approaches change differently. Many people cling to the old times and wait for them to return. Some people become obsessed with planning for the future. Some people only live for today. The one thing that’s common to everyone is change is inevitable. People get older, economies shift, jobs are lost, people die. The saying “the only thing constant is change” exists for a reason. So how do we respond to change in a healthy way? Continue reading →