Wednesday, August 8, 2007
I spent the evening at Father Joe's today and I met a whole lot of kids who have AIDS, and it sure put all my own problems in perspective.
There were these two boys who were 12 and 14 years old. I saw stacks of their paintings. These paintings are full of this incredible sense of joy. The colors are vibrant, the compositions imaginative, and they're full of images of happy people. So, Fr. Joe tells me these kids won't last more than another year or so. They LOOK like they're about 8 years old. Fr. Joe tells me their meds stunt their growth; they get frozen at a certain physical age. They look like angels.
Of course my first impulse is, "What do these kids need, how can we get them the things they want," and Fr. Joe says to me, "No. We have plenty of donations. Everyone gives us money. I'd rather you just came here and sat with the kids sometimes, watch TV with them, even take a nap here. They really need to have men around." (There's an abundance of house mothers, house aunts, etc.)
You see those sunflowers? That is a stunning painting. It has a sense of ecstasy. The flowers are alive, they're practically swaying. The kid is going to die and there is absolutely NOTHING I can do about it. Am I upset? You tell me.
I will go over there again soon and "take a nap." After all, you all know I am having trouble sleeping.