dream big

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a few days before i left for my trip to Kopila Valley I received a little envelope in the mail. inside was a crumpled note from one of the girls my team sponsors, Hima Tamata. the note read, “dear lindsay, i love you. heema and lindsay are best friends.” when i got here i couldn’t wait to finally meet hima, the girl i’ve been following on maggie’s blog for months(blinknow.org). before i could get a word out hima walked up to me and started singing “let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.” at first i had no idea what she was referrring to considering its around 90 degrees here everyday. then hima pulled out the christmas card that my notre dame friends and i sent her back in december. when you open the card it plays a christmas carol. hima had memorized the song and had even memorized the note i had written inside. she named each of the girls that had signed the card and asked “are these all my friends in america?” hima’s eyes got so big when i replied yes and all she could say back was “oh ma gawd.”

maggie found hima 5 years ago breaking rocks to sell to construction companies and rummaging through garbage to support her family. she has 3 brothers and her mother is widowed. maggie helped enroll hima into school for the first time in her entire life and her mom is working again. hima’s 12 years old now and in the second grade. when i’m with hima i forget how much she’s already been through. she’s such a happy, energetic, carefree girl. she cares so much about her family and is always telling me how proud she is of how hard her mom works.

hima has the biggest heart of anyone i know. i gave her a journal the first day we met so we can continue to write notes to each other once i go home. the other morning in class she took out the journal and gave me 8 notes, one for each of the girls that signed the christmas card. each said something like “dear maddie, i love you. my name is heema. i read in 2 class. my mom breaks rock. you are my best friend. heema loves maddie.” i read through each of the following notes addressed to jordan, britney, and a couple other girls but i stopped when i got to the last one, it read “dear dreams.” i couldn’t figure it out at first but then i realized the last sentenced i had written in the card was “follow your dreams!” hima had gotten confused and thought that “dreams” was one of her friends in america. i was about to break it to her that “dreams” really isn’t a person but then she turned to me and said, “i am so lucky to have 9 friends in america. i work hard in school so one day i come visit my friends and i see dreams” after taking a second to think about it i decided maybe hima is onto something after all. right now her friend “dreams” might not exist but hima’s right, if she keeps working hard in school one day “dreams” technically will be true.

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