I do not hesitate to proudly brag about our children, as you already know. Now I'll do it again, simply because it feels important to share what we have experienced in recent weeks.
I think I already have told you about one of our boys who has always had a hard time at school.
At the end of this school year, the school set an ultimatum for him to be able to continue school the coming school year. After meetings with the teachers, Gik, Aem and Eak came home with a pile of papers and projects. Most subjects were included. He had to conduct and present his work in a week. And what happens? Well, we got to see how all his friends, unasked, joined up in support and helped where they could. And he fixed it!
Two of our boys who just reached their teens and whose fathers are already dead lost their mother recently. I being Swedish, get extremely worried about them; Will they be able to show their sorrow? Do they have someone they choose to turn to if they need to talk?
All of us at Barnhem attended the funeral and my anxiety disappeared when I saw how all our children gathered round their two mourning friends. How all the boys were sitting as close as they could to their mourning friends. Just being there together, no words needed.
One of our boys has got dengue fever and must stay in hospital. Our teenage girls have offered directly to spend their last days of school holidays at the hospital to take care of their friend. We are not talking about going there for short visits but spending whole days and nights at hospital to look after their friend. They do it as the most natural thing in the world and they do not expect him to feel either guilty or grateful - they are there for him, not to be thanked. And no, they do not feel the slightest pity about themselves for spending their last days of the school holiday in hospital - this is just what you do if you are a good friend.
To quote our dear friend Owen "The children do not need us, they have each other.”
“A friend in need is a friend indeed.”