Friday, March 11, 2016

OMG I think my babies are little growing up people now!!!

I don't know who taught them to pose like that.
My kids and I spent a few hours today at the east coast distribution center. Though they could have stayed in the comfort of the air conditioned van, and played, or done workbook pages, or listened to the radio, they insisted that they wanted to help (even though it meant being outdoors in the weird 80 degree whether in early March that was "just too hooooooot!"...)

So cool...
It was a gentle reminder of not only the intelligence and love children possess and the capabilities they have to rise to the occasion, but of how lucky we are to have the relative safety and comfort that we enjoy in our own lives...watching them work, I got a glimpse of them in the opposite situation; were we in the shoes of the refugees, my amazing kiddos would be the kids - like so many Carry The Future has already encountered - helping each other out, keeping things light for their fellow travelers, and prevailing even when the family is sadly separated along the way.

Even carrying younger siblings when they have to.

These are kids just like ours, rising to meet horrid, unfair needs, and making it work. 

Actually caught a candid of them in action! You can barely see them but all three are in there actually working, the littlest asked to be in charge of collecting and sorting the 'trash'-all the silica packets, plastic bags, and discarded papers - while her sisters busied themselves opening the boxes, pulling out the carriers, removing the tags and directions from them, and putting them into the appropriate bags.

Can you imagine that here in America? Our schoolchildren forced to suddenly take on a grown up independence for their own sake and for the sake of each other, on a long, dangerous journey to the unknown?

My 8 year old carried her 3 year old sister around in a carrier (which was very part of a very large, generous donation given to CTF by Evenflo! So wonderful!) for a bit today, to illustrate what is so hard for us to fathom.

I think Cadence's face says it all here.

All three kiddos took their roles opening and sorting carriers very seriously (except that they giggled the whole time, which is admittedly not very serious!) 

Of course it *was* a race to see if they could finish the jobs they'd chosen before I finished everything I was doing...which I was not informed of until AFTER I lost. 

My kids helped me out for real today, and we only stopped because we couldn't fit any more recycling in our car! 

Seriously took us a solid 15 minutes just to pull it all out of the trunk and stick it in the bins.

(And of course they all insisted on helping with the recycling too; which admittedly took a little more assistance from the lone grown up in the mix.)

Actually Cadence figured out a way to do it unassisted...just took some skill and careful aim or it'd bounce right back at her.  She found a good rhythm pretty quick, though!

While she technically *could* do a variation of Cadence's trick, Hazel decided to conserve her energetically resources and just had me lift her up after the first one. Smart choice.

Calliope wanted very much to help with this too, but -probably in protest to my assistance - she would only do it if she was  stepping as hard as she could into my stomach for completely useless traction.

There is so much to be done, but my heart is actually soaring as I realize how much this work that my kids chose to do is going to help the helpers -kids, parents, extended relatives, caring friends - make that awful journey that much easier, safer, more sound...or at the very least, more comfortable.

In solidarity,
(And Cadence, Hazel, and Calliope)

Callie and I testing out the new evenflo carrier design.  Seems to be a general thumbs up, I'd say!  Thank you, evenflo!!!