I know many of you have specifically been praying for our travel and time in Uganda with our 16 month old daughter, Vivian. I thought I would offer a quick account of her experience thus far on the journey.
This is, of course, not Vivian's first trip to the Pearl. Last May she was four months old when we crossed the Atlantic. While the travel and month in a guesthouse wasn't simple, she took to Uganda almost instantly. She was passed around like a pancake and didn't have a care in the world. I was optimistic about this second trip, but still cautious. Toddlers are very different creatures than infants. I honestly had no idea what her reaction would be this time around.
I won't bore you with details of our transit. It wasn't a nightmare. It wasn't serene. It could have been better. But it also could have been much MUCH worse. Vivian had her moments (as all little kids do) but I am pleased to say that this year her mother was much better at taking them in stride.
Before we left the States I made an agreement with myself that this month in Uganda wasn't going to be scheduled. I would make an effort to provide as much structure as I could within reason, and then, I would have to relinquish all control. This means doing things I NEVER do at home. Naps happen when and where they happen. So does bedtime. I am taking each day as it comes, surrendering the familiar rhythm of life I am accustomed to. But so far-it is totally worth it! Life is strange, but it is happy.
Vivian (or Kyamagero as she is lovingly called here) was made to be a culture crossing kid. When we first arrived jetlagged and overwhelmed, she wanted no one besides me. But by Sunday afternoon she was blissfully crawling around the Kamara's living room in only her diaper. She fed herself a large plate of Ugandan chicken and rice, got completely covered in dirt, and beat the cowhide drums with all of her siblings.
There is such sweetness in watching ALL of my children playing to together. I thank God for my crazy child who seems to love our large, extended family as much as we do.