Smiles, Dancing, and Ice Cream Cones

The summers of 2008 and 2010 were some of the most remarkable and life changing times of my life. I first heard of His Little Ones though Andrei Duta my sophomore year at Pepperdine. I knew I had a heart for the children of Romania and was excited to join HLO on a short-term trip following the close of the school year.[/text_output]

I know it’s impossible to alleviate all the hurt, but I know first hand, it is not impossible to show love and increase smiles.

Romania is a beautiful country but laden with so much hurt. I know it’s impossible to alleviate all the hurt that comes from unstable home-life, but I know, first hand, it is not impossible to show love and increase smiles.

We held birthday parties at McDonald’s and celebrated the orphans’ lives. We took them up to see beautiful castles in Transylvania and encouraged their pride of country. We took several children up to the mountains to spend time in fresh country air. We went on walks through caves and held little hands. We played chase around the orphanage and learned the games that were their staples of play. We admired dancing skills of little ones whose mothers weren’t there to smile and clap. We bought shoes. We helped study. We had play dates at a carnival, took a little boat ride around a small lake, and purchased ice cream cones.

When I look back, I rarely remember that there was a language barrier. I always remember the friendships, the tears, and the smiles.

I developed such special relationships with a few of the children. When I look back, I rarely remember that there was a language barrier. I always remember the friendships, the tears, and the smiles. Now, having children of my own, I find it so important to celebrate the days we have with our children. The little luxuries of leisure time playing in the comforting walls of home and sharing special outings all bring so much joy.

Still, I am so thankful that I was able to love a few of God’s children in Romania and still can through prayer.

One of the most rewarding things I remember from Romania was being able to hold some babies at the orphanage hospital. I got to see their eyes open in a new way from being snuggled and seeing a smile up close. It still breaks my heart to know there are many more I can’t hold, can’t smile at, and can’t love. Still, I am so thankful that I was able to love a few of God’s children in Romania and still can through prayer. The children in Bucharest’s orphanages are so blessed by His Little Ones and the relationships they have with the Dutas. I only wish I could be there and be part of it regularly.

– Amy Dale