Week Nine – Back at It

School started again on Monday, just in time for my sanity. Although I waxed romantic in my last post about enjoying the downtime, I had reached my limit by Sunday.

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My very first attempt – it got a little better after the 3rd time…

That being said, the highlight of Saturday and Sunday was learning how to do the kids’ hair. I have never had much interest in hair, but when one of the caretakers, Lisa, said she wanted to teach me, I could not turn her down. Hair is still not my calling, but the girls all beg me to do their hair and it is fun togetherness time. Thankfully it is going to be a weekend practice because, as Lisa told me, I’m not ready to do their hair for school yet.

The residents, and all of the students and teachers, were full of energy and happiness on Monday morning that school was back on after a week off. Everyday after school we listen to music. I was starting to get incredibly tired of the 15 or so Haitian songs I know when I was informed that they love Shakira. When I played Waka Waka (This Time for Africa)(The Official 2010 FIFA World Cup Song), everyone, and I mean everyone, immediately started chanting and dancing.

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Dance party

Following our dance party, everyone started climbing into my lap, cuddling with me, and calling me mommy. While this was just kids being silly, the kids and adults alike have started calling me pet names like “cherie” and “mon amour” – really making me feel loved and needed.

Following a tour that I led with Americans, I was joking about forgetting how to speak English. Everyone began teasing me about being Haitian. This idea was strangely solidified in the classroom the following day when another group of Americans gave candy and stickers to all of the kids, including me. I can’t be sure but since they didn’t give candy to the teachers it seemed to me as if they thought I was a 19 year old white girl attending Haitian kindergarten …

Two months in and my music, speech, and sometimes even my hairstyle, are now reflecting my Haitain life. Hard to think about going home in December, especially considering that I was cold in the upper 70s weather yesterday.

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7 thoughts on “Week Nine – Back at It”

  1. Hey Grayson, these weekly updates make my day. I can just see you doing the things you write about. I know you are learning so much and that this experience will impact how you see and interpret things for ever! I am jealous that Lelia is not with you! Hope that we will get to see you at Christmas time.
    Susan Jones

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  2. You continue to amaze, Grayson. Those kids are blessed to have you there and I can tell that they are a blessing to you. Love your blog!

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  3. I love reading your words that come from your heart. As I read what you have written, an image of your words forms in my mind. You braiding and fixing hair! Of course they love you as you have grown to love them. Your kindness and gentle ways make them want to be near you. Thank you for sharing!

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