Nkwagala.

“Nkwagala” Never has such a word ever brought tears to my eyes so quickly. As Baby Martin, spoke these sweet sounds to me, which mean “I love you” in Lugandan, I lost it.

Today was tough. Martin and I were filled with nerves as we patiently sat in the Pentagon Hospital waiting room. Just two short days ago I was sitting with him in the clinic as they removed his wounds, when I learned that he was showing signs of Syphilis and HIV. It is apparently very common here for children to get STDs passed down to them from their parents and they suffer greatly from the diseases as they grow and develop. As soon as I found this out, I knew I had to do something.

As we waited, I tried my very best to calm his nerves. We bought sodas and took selfies and played games like peek a boo and patty cake but something was still of. He didn’t have the same contagious smile running across his face and his giggles were nowhere to be found. He was just a nervous as I was, I was just trying not to show it.

We got called in to see a doctor, who proceeded to do a basic check up and exam on my little one. He then led us to the lab where they would do tests for Malaria, HIV, Typhoid, and Syphilis. As they took his blood and pricked his tiny little finger, Martin squealed and cried. I did my very best to soothe his pains but it was heartbreaking. We waited once again in that very cold and sterile waiting room until the nurse walked out with the results.

The doctor took us back once again and explained that Martin tested negative to every single disease and the wounds were just a simple fungal infection. There would be a months worth of tablets and ointment but my little baby boy would be just fine! Praise Jesus!!!

I felt like this weight was lifted off my shoulders and I think Martin could feel it too. Our taxi ride back was full of giggles and smiles and “I love you’s” shared back and forth. Once we arrived back at school, Martin didn’t leave my side once. We were best buds now and I was so very happy I could leave knowing he was being taken care of.

The rest of the day was a slow one. There was a rainstorm for several hours, leaving us cooped up in the houses. I was a bit exhausted from my morning so I took a nice long nap with baby Patricia. She played with my hair till I fell asleep and poked my nose every 10 minutes to make sure I was still breathing. It was just what I needed after my stressful hospital visit, a day of rest with my youngest little sponsor girl.

Tomorrow is full of goodbyes, and my heart hurts when I think about it. It is my last day in Wakiso village before my flight on Friday and my last day seeing all my little bundles of joy. I am not ready to leave this beautiful place at all and words will never capture just how much I am going to miss waking up in my home away from home. Tomorrow is going to be a tough one but I know these goodbyes are just “see you laters” and I am hoping to be back oh so very soon.