Friday, August 3, 2007 Part 2
After lunch we went to the Ministry of Hope Crisis Nursery. The children here range from about two months to one year. There are many reasons for the babies being placed here. Their mothers have died and the villages can’t take care of an infant. The idea is that during the crisis phase the children will be cared for at the center then be reunited with family in the villages.
The clinical officer, Mwawi, seemed at times a one-woman dynamo. She is petite, soft-spoken, and she loves these babies! When we arrived there were already visitors rocking babies. We patiently waited then we were able to go into one of the rooms and pick the babies up rock them, play with them, take them outside. I found Madalitso to be quite talkative and knew this was the boy for me! I was quite surprised to find that he was about 10 and a half months old and still not crawling, even quite wobbly when he tried to sit up; he didn’t even try to push off me with his legs.Yes, I admit I compared him to my daughter who had the most ideal set of circumstances coming into this world. Sarah was walking by this age; I felt a twinge of sadness. But then he started chatting with me and all the sadness vanished! He made eye contact with me ,and we jabbered back and forth. Oh, how I love to jabber! He and I walked outside and played out on the mat covered with more babies and volunteers. The day was moving quickly ahead of us. We had one more stop to make. I took Madalitso back to his crib and situated his mobile above his head. He was not happy that I was leaving. He raised his little arms up. I caved and picked him up and cuddled on him a little longer. I kissed his round cheeks, put him back in his crib and walked out of the room wiping tears from my eyes. I know he won’t consciously remember me, but I hope that somehow my hugs and kisses left behind an imprint that he can feel. He certainly will be in my heart for a long time.