How are you doing? We are so use to quick fixes, instant everything, that this time is hard. We’ve all found ourselves out of our “normal” routines, managing a different way of doing life. Some days we are doing well; others, well, lets just say “not so good.” A statistic was recently published by the courts in El Salvador saying that domestic violence has risen 70% since the quarantine began. Those are only the cases reported. We know that many domestic violence cases never get reported, often due to fear. Suicide rates are up, depression is up and anxiety is at its limits. Hunger is up with so many without work. I’m sure the rise in these statistics is not found only in El Salvador. On a scale of 1 to 5, with 1 being “I’m pretty chill, and 5 being “I need some serious prayer,” we can all find ourselves fluctuating the scale from one moment to the next . . . if we are honest. None of this is “good.”
But one of the ways we know we can help boost our spirits, our souls, is to look around for the good. We become so self absorbed that we can find ourselves frozen in life, frozen on perspective. Some days, the “good” may seem like we need a magnifying glass … a very strong one at that to see any good. Other days the “good” can just pop right out at us. There is good being worked out. Just listen to nature as it flourishes outside our windows, look at spring still springing forth or value time given that had been stripped by the busyness of life. I know we could all muster up a list if we’d lift our heads!
We are heading into week six of quarantine in El Salvador . . . along with an announcement of 15 more days added after week six. Quarantine for us has meant that everyone stays home, unless it is absolutely essential to leave. Only one person per family is allowed to go out to purchase groceries or medicines, and that person must have an authorized letter to be out. Mask on, one person in the car, ID and papers in hand . . . as you pass through military and police checkpoints. Squirts of hand sanitizer wherever you go, temperature taken, cars sprayed, people sprayed. Only “essential” employees, determined by the government, are allowed to go to work. Schools closed and learning moved to studying at home. It is all an eery sort of silence.
This has made taking care of the children we serve a little harder. Some staff working from home. Other staff at home because they can’t travel. Limited staff, homeschooling, extra cleaning and cooking . . . and we should probably repeat cooking and cleaning. Less time off for our houseparents. Fight or flight responses running wild on some days. Exhaustion like we’ve never experienced.
BUT . . . We are blessed to be caring for children in family style settings. We are blessed that we have food on the table for every meal. We are blessed to have avocados and mangos in season. We are blessed to have stoves to cook on and refrigerators to store food. We are blessed that we can continue the children’s education even if it is not easy or what we had planned. We are blessed that at least three computers are working. We are blessed to have a staff that has a passion for what they do, even when it is above and beyond all they’d ever imagined. We are blessed by a million birds singing their songs. We are even blessed by being isolated out in the countryside. We are blessed to have space to run and play and social distance. We are blessed.
And we are blessed by YOU! Thank you to each and everyone who has given sacrificially for us to be able to care children from hard places during this pandemic time. We are indeed grateful.
We are sure you are blessed too. Let us know a blessing you are experiencing during this time. Could we reach a 100 blessings on our list?