Wednesday November 25th
Once again, we’ve been struck, stretched, moved and convicted. We are so incredibly grateful for another day of learning, growth, and incredible, incredible love.
The day started with our second trauma competent care training. Each and every day we have learned so much about the needs of children with trauma backgrounds. Today we discussed the three different types of trauma and their consequences. Acute trauma is a one time chronic event such as an earthquake or hurricane. Chronic trauma is a series of traumatic events that affects a child over a course of time. Complex Development Trauma occurs when a caregiver fails to give a child the loving and nurturing care that they needed. When Complex Development Trauma occurs, the brain develops at a much slower rate. In other words, that sort of trauma derails brain development and causes that child to be 1/2 their chronological age, causes problems with cognition, and pretty severe learning difficulties. Trauma causes changes in body, brain and belief systems. Our trainer Sammy said it best today, “ behavior is the language of the child who has lost his voice.”
We switched it up a bit today and visited the extension campus for the Hope Program. It is a newer campus, with only two caregiver families and 5 high school students. It made for a beautiful opportunity to spend time with them on a more casual basis. Wendy and Aldolfo, and David and Veronica were incredibly gracious and welcoming to us. It was wonderful to meet them and spend time in their space.
We were put to work today in a big way! The Promised Land campus had some big projects for us to work on and we are so excited to say that we finished every single one of them! The best part was that all of the projects contributed to the kids’ safety. We completed a razor wire security fence. We put up a chain link fence to separate a basketball court and playground. We spread 28,000 lbs of dirt around the yard to make it more level before grass seed is put down. Paint was touched up, clotheslines were hung, and emergency lights were installed. Oh, it was hard, hard physical work, but, my goodness, it felt amazing to labor and ache in doing the Lord’s work! The blisters, stiff necks, and back aches were so worth it!
To our absolute delight, we were able to stop at a Monterrey restaurant for dinner. After today, we were so ready for some great Mexican food. El Pollo Loco did not disappoint! An all-you-can-eat salsa bar (amazing!) and some incredible chicken and tortillas made a perfect end to our already perfect day.
It’s hard to believe that we only have two more days here. How is it that it is Wednesday evening? How is it that this trip that we have been planning for and praying for is in process and almost at an end? It’s 9:00 right now, and I’m so humbled sitting here surrounded by this team of amazing people who started out as team members, grew into friends, and are feeling pretty much like family now. We’ve been exhausted together, filthy together, overwhelmed together, humbled together, and blessed together. We’ve laughed, cried and done pretty much everything in between. I don’t think we could have asked for anything else as a team.
It seems strange that tomorrow is Thanksgiving. And while many of us will not have our families to give thanks and share peace and gratitude with, we have each other and the amazing children, students, caregivers and staff here in Monterrey and that blesses us beautifully indeed.
“And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body, and be thankful.”