April 8th is not just another day in Haiti, but it also happens to be my birthday. Before this trip I was kind of disappointed I wouldn’t be able to be at home with my friends and family and basically a day all about me. I didn’t really know what to expect, but to be honest I had a very unexpected birthday.
This week has been amazing on so many different levels. But I also think that since today was my birthday it made me think about things differently. This whole week is about serving God and giving to the Haitian community. Each day at the soccer outreach we serve the players and other community members a meal with juice. Yesterday everyone sat down and somewhat waited patiently for their food. Once they got it though they pretty much ate it soooo quickly. Since today there was more people it made things a little bit more difficult. I was on water duty today which meant when each game was over Valarie and I passed out the small water bags. We were bombarded after each game. It was amazing to see that almost half of the people would stand around and try and snag another one. I got so frustrated because I couldn’t speak the language and couldn’t tell them to sit down and that they could only have one. These people don’t get very much water throughout their everyday lives and when they get the opportunity to get free water they take advantage of that.
I didn’t really think about the fact that it was my birthday today. The only times I actually remember thinking about it was when Stephen randomly came up. to me and would say “Happy Birthday!” I was simply too busy to think about myself and I think that’s what this week is about for me. I consider myself a very selfish person and complain when I don’t get what I want. Going back to when we gave out lunches, that’s when I realized how selfish I was. After we gave out food many would continue to get closer and closer just to get more food. I watched them somewhat beg and say they hadn’t already had food when they really did. It kind of made me sad because we have it so good and pretty much get what we want when we want it, but this is sometimes the only meal of the day for the Haitians.
Overall this week I think I have done pretty well on not complaining and being selfish. I just realized that in this country it’s not all about you. One last thing that struck me today was we went to the pool with the HCH kids. At one point we had French fries and drinks. We let the kids get what they wanted first before we ate. Two of the girls got their food and still came over to me and another girl and offered us a fry before they even had one. Just something about that made my heart jump even though I’m not quite sure what it is. These kids are so loving and so caring for everyone but themselves. It pretty much made my birthday and I’m looking forward to the rest of the week. :]
***Editor's note: Breanna doesn't know it yet, but in a few hours she will celebrate her birthday Haitian Children's Home style with a cake made by Sandra and some cards from home!