Worse Than Sending off A Missionary - by Calvin Cook

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Although the title of my blog post may sound discouraging and depressing, it’s kind of in a good way, if that is even possible. I was supposed to blog last night, and choosing to procrastinate until tonight was a tremendous mistake. 

This week has gone so well, and so fast. In my first blog I said that the kids were shy and would hopefully warm up to us Americans. Well they definitely did, and did a lot  more than warm up! The next day of teaching, the children greeted us standing and said respectfully “Good morning sir.” and “good morning madam.” As the days went by, the children’s comfort around us and love for us grew as did their greeting voices’ volume every morning: from “gooood morning sir.” to “goooooooooooooooood morning sir!” and then finally “GOOD MORNING SIR!”

I thought it would have been impossible to pick a favorite. I observed that almost every teen that has come back from India had at least three kids that they had picked as their favorites or the other way around. Sahil, Karan, and Yuvraj completely took me over: sitting on my lap during games, stealing my hat and looking confused when I would put it on their heads sideways, and dreading the moment I left everyday on the long jeep ride home.

I have to admit that Sahil was my favorite of the three, and I couldn’t help but be a little depressed the days he wasn’t present at the school. I would catch myself looking at the rusted gate of the school, hoping that i would hear his footsteps and see his shadow as he walked onto the school grounds with a smile. It is a very peculiar thing loving these children. We don’t have a means of communication, and we have only known each other for five days. I don’t know if the kids loved us as much as we loved them, but let’s just say I refuse to have white kids now. 

Today, the day we said goodbye to the kids forever, hurts and I think it always will. My little brother Sahil left the school early crying, not even saying goodbye which was hard enough, but seeing almost all of my village teammates sobbing, intertwined with three kids each as they cried together was too much. I had a feeling i wasn’t going to cry. Sahil left me forever without saying goodbye and that didn’t make me cry, so i thought i was as solid as the ground they sit on. My teammates’ emotions were already getting me teary eyed, but as soon as the kids’ teachers said goodbye with tears in their eyes, I think we all lost it a little more. At least now I know my lacrimal glands actually work. I thought they were permanently sealed after puberty.

This week went by so fast. Saying goodbye to the kids, saying goodbye to the translators, and even saying goodbye to our “headquarters” and the view is such a sad day. Like I said though, the love we have for and with these kids is an odd thing. The pain of saying goodbye just makes us love them more. It makes the memories even better. It makes the curry a little spicier. The people in India are so amazing, and everything about Sundarnagar is mind-blowing and beautiful. I’m sad to say goodbye but i wouldn’t change anything about this trip. DO YMAD KIDS!