Thursday, May 1, 2014

Throwback to Honduras Volume 3: Making Margarita Smile

     Well, the end is in sight. One final done, two to go. Today my mental energy is consumed by studying and preparing to move out of my dorm, so it feels like a good day to take a break from coming up with new topics to share another Honduras memory. Today I want to tell you about Margarita. She is one of the girls I met who really made a big impact about me.
     Margarita never said a word to me. I'm not sure exactly what her situation is, but she doesn't talk, and I often saw her sitting alone. One of the first days we were there, something made me decide to go sit by her. I guess that in a way, I know what it's like to feel different and alone, and I felt drawn to her. I didn't really know what to do at first, I knew she probably wasn't going to talk to me, and i didn't know enough Spanish to say much to her. I did know how to say hello, so I did, multiple times. I'm not sure how long I was sitting with her that day, but during that time, the interaction I had with her left me feeling like I had met a long lost friend.
A picture of Margarita that I keep on my desk. 
I love how she always has that peaceful look in her eyes, despite her circumstances.
     I felt kind of silly just sitting there saying "Hola" over and over again, and Margarita must have agreed, because gradually a smile began to appear on her face. The moment I saw that smile is hard to describe adequately, because it was such a personally significant moment for me. In that moment, I felt validated. I realized that I was on a real mission trip for a real reason. I stopped blaming myself for all the things I couldn't do, and stopped comparing what I was doing to what everyone else was doing. I realized that sitting on the floor with Margarita in that moment was something that God planned, even if it wasn't exhausting work.
     Over the next few days, I spent much more time with Margarita. I made sure I hugged her and spent some time with her each day, and I got to see many more of her smiles that I loved so much. Saying goodbye to her at the end of our trips was one of the hardest moments ever.
     There's something special about Margarita. Maybe you have to meet her to fully understand it, but she just means so much to me that I had to tell you about her. Margarita helped me understand that everyone has a purpose and no person's purpose is more or less important than anyone else's. Though I'm still working on it, she helped me to begin to realize that my differences don't make me less significant than anyone else. I am so glad I met her, and although I know the chances are small, I hope that I am lucky enough to see her again this summer. Either way, I will always remember her smile, and the lesson she taught me without saying a word.
Me with Margarita and another girl who meant a lot to me, Aracely. It's not a good picture of me, but I love it because I am with both of them



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