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I'm Not Your Mama
The lives of orphans are quite harsh, especially in a third world country.
I needed community service hours, so I went to a Babies Home with some classmates. We would play with the babies, mostly one-year-olds, and just let the caretakers have a quick break, as well as giving the babies something to do.
The orphanage didn't have a lot of toys, so fun time for the babies was mostly staring out the window, which had pictures of fish and boats painted on them. Seeing as though they couldn't reach for themselves to look out the window, we had to lift them up to the window and let them look at the pretty pictures.
One little boy, wearing a pink shirt with a bunny on it and the cutest jeans ever crafted, toddled up to me, smiling and holding out his arms. At that point, my arms were sore and I couldn't carry another one if my life depended on it. So I sat down, and let him climb on my shoulders to see the pretty pictures.
Soon, a little girl wearing an adorable yellow dress with a bumblebee on it toddled over to me, looking at my socks, hesitantly touching my knees.
Upon realizing that I didn't mind, she sat down on my lap, leaning against my stomach as though it was a chair.
The little boy on my shoulders glanced and the girl, and before you know it, he climbed off my shoulders and started shoving the little girl away.
"Be nice! Don't push her away!"
Before I knew it, he was sitting on her head, pressing her face-first into the dirty floors.
"Hey! Do not sit on her! Get off her!"
I knew he couldn't understand me, but the caretakers clearly didn't give anything about the poor little girl, and they couldn't speak English, so I was left to fix this problem by myself.
I lifted the little boy off the girl, firmly saying how bad it was to push around others like that.
Before I knew it, he said one word that changed my life.
The little boy started to cry and hugged my stomach, crying out "Mama, Mama."
I paused, in complete shock.
Then the despair kicked in.
I wasn't his mother.
I was an American girl living in Thailand.
His mother was either dead, she was too poor to raise him or she didn't want him.
He was all alone, with no mama.
He sat there, hugging me for a few minutes, with the little girl watching. She pointed at him, and stared at me, as though she wanted to know why he was crying.
I smiled at the girl, mouthing, "It's okay."
No it wasn't.
It wasn't okay.
A little boy thought I was his mother, and he thought that he was going to go out of the orphanage and back home.
I was glad that he didn't speak English, for I never would've forgiven myself if I told him the truth.
He cried and cried until one of the caretakers turned on Sesame Street.
Completely forgetting me, he toddled way with the other children, staring in awe.
That little boy will forget me.
But I will never forget him.
And on that day, I vowed that if I ever wanted a child, I would adopt one.