In hindsight I had been longing to meet you for quite some time. For days I had felt an urge in my heart, the very clear urge to act…but I didn’t quite know on what.? I then found a paper with the advertisement of an orphanage in India. This was the address of your home. The place you grow up and are expected to feel safe.
I didn’t know that then… I just knew for certain I had to go. I didn’t know I would have the privilege to meet you.
I came prepared with gifts I thought children your age might like. Things that would bring you great joy. Things for playing together and things you could call your own. I made sure they were clean and unbroken. You were still unbroken yourself when we met.
The first time I saw You, You were drinking water from a tap outside. Other children were being bathed. They glanced over at me warily. While walking up to them, they hid behind one of the caregivers. I gave them each a gift and when I turned back to find you, but you had disappeared. I strolled around the grounds trying to make a picture of how you spent your time. You had a school room, equipped with wooden tables and unmatching chairs. In a corner were a few books. Maybe you’d read them all one day. I went outside, sat down on a rock and watched the caregivers going about their every day chores. Washing, cleaning, looking after your friends…or rather your family.
Suddenly I felt a hand on my upper arm I turned around to find behind me. First poking me with your pudgy finger and then stroking me.
Your smile was so bright! It is highly contagious you know?
I had to laugh as well. I noticed something welling up inside of me, tears started to stream down my face. I felt happy looking at you. Just so beautiful for who you are and sad because I knew I had to leave. Had to leave you behind. Something kicked in, an instinct, something inside me had changed at that moment. I reached into my bag and pulled out a doll. My favorite…she used to be, “Still is” and gave her to you. I knew I had made you happy. You started to play, examine the frills on her blue dress. I left you to it and got up to leave. You didn’t notice. Walking out through your homes gate I turned around at a crunching noise. It was you walking towards me on the dusty ground. You gave me a look. I captured it. I will never know what you were thinking.
All Photos featured are my own.