With love to ABBS

“My love is my weight. By it, I am carried wherever I am carried.” St Augustine

It is hard to believe that I have flown almost halfway across the world to be here and that it has only been my second time here in Nepal and A.B.B.S. The smiles, the hugs, and the words exchanged make me feel as if I have been home all this time.

And you may ask why. Why do I return and why do I wish to return again next year despite the challenges of distance, money, and homesickness. For me, it has been the weight of my love

During my first experience at ABBS, I fell in love, I fell in love with the family of students and teachers who live true the HDCS model of honesty, love, and righteousness. Last summer I spent a lot of time with Bibika a big 16-year-old girl who cannot speak, can hardly move and is unfocused. Yet I fell in love with her loud, spontaneous cackling and her eyes that sparkled when she hears the song “Tara Bazi Lai Lai”. I also fell in love with Sanju, Bibi’s teacher, for her gentle care towards the green room students. I listened to her as she told stories of each of her students and how she can easily understand what are the wants or needs of the children even with the smallest sounds or gestures. This all made me fall in love with ABBS for the first time.

This trip, I fell in love in the purple room. A small class of only four students pulled me, quite literally, into their intimate circle. It is always a party in the purple classroom. From day one we were singing, playing and making decorations for the class. Goma, the teacher was thrilled to have new materials to make paper flowers and snowflakes. She unleashed her creativity in an array of colored inventions now hanging in the classroom. Her child-like enthusiasm and sweet smile have made a new room into a familiar and comfortable environment. Not to mention the children who never fail to make me laugh. One thing is certain, I was not in control of my bursting laughter. Again and again, they have reminded me just who is the teacher and who is the student! Manasa proceeds to patiently and sometimes with frustration teach me Nepalese songs and correct my pronunciation. I am afraid I am a slow learner to the Nepalese language and require much time to be taught. Saheel is always busily talking or preaching to me about God’s Love and how I should praise Him daily. How I envy his devotion! And let me not forget sweet, bright Sujel who is always helpful and considerate in sharing and in games. He is Goma’s teacher assistant!

The many moments I have shared at ABBS have all composed my falling in love experience. Like the irresistible pull of gravity, so is the weight of my love for the people I have fallen for. I am so grateful to have met and fallen in love with ABBS. It is through love that I have grown, been humbled, and am driven to love as they have loved me.