What is there to say?

A lot.

Before we came home, I was talking to some of my team and I was stuck on how I was going to explain this to people. What do you say to people when they ask you how it was? Like, I will never look at a port-a-potty with distaste again? That my quads are the strongest they’ve ever been? That when you drive in Addis you hold your breath because between the people and livestock on the roads, there are also vehicles going in every direction imaginable?

No.

There is way more than that.

Like, I have a second family and in the 9 days total we were there, I never ever imagined to feel as I did when we left. That sobbing puddles would happen. That the guard checking my passport before entering the airport would pat my shoulder because he just watched me say goodbye to a most wonderful person.

My life was truly touched in the most inexplicable way. I was blessed to meet these women and children living with HIV/AIDS, but, also with hope and peace. There was something about them I wanted to have. In the midst of dirt and despair, I saw light and joy. I saw gardens flourish, I saw women giving more than they received. I saw seeds planted from years ago, from many teams ago, abundant and full.

What can I say?

There is more, but I am not quite there. For now this is all I can say. All I can explain. In pictures. And words.

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8 thoughts on “What is there to say?

  1. oh jen. i don’t know what to say either. the words will come, i know. and you will carry this experience with you forever. and that is a true gift.

  2. I think what you’ve said so far, says a lot. The mere fact that you are at a loss for words says volumes about your experience. I can’t wait to see more…these are such real photographs that it makes me feel like every cutesy silly photograph I shoot is pointless.
    What an experience, Jen.

    • Thank you sweet lady…in no means should you ever feel your pictures are trivial…we always need sweet reminders of what is important to us on a daily basis. I was just fortunate enough to travel outside of my mold, my little world for once. xoxo

  3. Jen. I don’t think you have to explain anything. Thank you for sharing. Its things like this that make me stop and remember to be grateful for what I have, while at the same time, remember to help and give to those less fortunate.

    Anxious to see more.

    Thank you.

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