We have spent the past days helping clean up one of the unofficial living sites on the island. We have been helping young guys heat up water for hot bucket showers, providing hygiene necessities, collecting trash, and sharing fresh clothing from the local warehouses. The days have been full of moments of pure joy, mixed with utter sadness and disgust. The people we are blessed to support are the ones who help us through, bringing light in moments of darkness.
I don’t think any other time in my life has been filled with such extreme highs and lows intertwined among one another. I read the news of yet another death in Moria Camp on our drive home last night. For a quick second I felt myself in deep sorrow with tears of sadness streaming down my cheeks. Within moments my sadness turned to anger. I reflected back on the day full of witnessing the inhumane living condition, and became lost in the shit storm.
This is when I bring myself back to the moments of joy throughout the day. Witnessing young guys supporting each other when they have next to nothing. New friends bringing us chips and juice with the few Euros they have in their pockets.
Today was a strenuous day, yet the moments playing through my head at the end of the day are the moments of deep laughter. The young guys kept asking my age… I finally told them that I am 28 years old, knowing they were all much younger than me. The guys all laughed and shouted, “Big Molly, Big Molly!” As I spent the day with them, they kept saying, “thank you Mama Molly, thank you Mama Molly”. They told me the way I cared for them reminded me of how their mother’s got them ready for school back home.
We laughed and laughed together, and for a brief time the reality of the harsh conditions around us seemed to dissolve. We teased each other throughout the rest of the day when my pen, tape, or any other item was hiding underneath something… “Ali Baba! Ali Baba!” One young guy hid Kyle’s boots behind a chair. They could hardly contain themselves with innocent laughter. It is moments like these that give me the inspiration to carry on.
As tough as the situation is here in Greece right now, the people are coming together to make the conditions bearable. I couldn’t imagine how harsh the situation would be without such a sense of community, sense of humanity. I am grateful for the laughs, the cries, the hugs, and the new friends being made with each passing day. I pray the world wakes up to see these survivors as the human beings that they truly are. They are no different than you and me. My motto continues… One world, one family. ❤