If I think about it long enough, it's almost enough to render me babbling and catatonic, curled into the fetal position underneath our non-existent baby grand:

In less than two months, over the course of a week, I'll find myself airborne almost 60 hours; sandwiched in between two flights, I'll be visiting arguably one of the most impoverished cities in the world. 

I'm scared to fly; prior to 2007, it had been ten years since I boarded a plane.  Because our children were at a perfect age at the same time we had a little extra cash, we took the family trip of a lifetime, navigating the beauty and majesty of the Grand Tetons and Yellowstone.  Just a few months later, after extensive planning and saving, we celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary in Puerto Rico and Antigua.   

For very different reasons, the trips were incredible memory-makers; I will always be thankful we were able to do those things. 

This upcoming trip is different, though, and not just because I'll be IN THE AIR FOR 2 1/2 DAYS, THANK-YEW-VERY-MUCH…but because it serves someone other than myself…a greater good…children in need. 

Several months ago, Compassion International announced its next blogger's trip and because I believe in the work of Compassion, I submitted my URL.  A few weeks ago, when I turned on my cell phone as I headed to school to drop off our kids, I had several messages waiting.  The first was an orthodontist appointment reminder; the second was from Shaun Groves.  Trying to listen as the blood drained from my head (a perfect reason for not using your cell while driving), I heard him say something about wanting "to talk about blogging".  Cryptic, he is. 

A phone call and flurry of emails later (maybe one day I'll blog about those), he asked me to join the team.  I cried.  I talked about it with my husband.  I said yes.

I can think of no greater use of my words
than to give voice to those who have none;

in spite of my fears,
in spite of having to make arrangements for my children
and leave them and my husband behind,
in spite of stepping out of my life
of privilege and luxury and excess
into a world of poverty and abuse and heartbreak. 

There was no way I couldn't say "yes".

The team is strong; our reach is deep and wide, and together we have thousands of readers–never before has that mattered more.   I hope you'll take time to meet Melissa, Pete, Angie and Anne, and our leaders Shaun, Spence and Patricia–all of these people speak with heart and soul, though with very different voices. 

I am grateful Alli, Megan, Shannon and Janice and Susan have offered to allow me to guest post on Blissfully Domestic, Blog Nosh Magazine, Rocks in My Dryer and 5 Minutes for Mom, extending the reach I have on Pensieve alone.   "Thank you" only begins to express my gratitude for their generosity.

As the title of this post suggests, though, it's not simply a matter of me squatting on others' internet real estate–

I.  Need.  YOU.

I'm not very brave on my own, and to know you're praying for and thinking about me and the team would make a world of difference.  There are so many things to pray for, but readily coming to mind:

  • travel details
  • our families
  • fears
  • wisdom in writing and ability to communicate well
  • the children and project leaders we'll be meeting
  • that sponsors would step forward for every child. 
  • our assimilation to Kolkata…and our assimilation post trip.  That might be the most difficult.  Maybe.  I don't know yet.

Sponsor a Compassion child from India!
Also, during this season prior to and leading up to the trip, would you consider sponsoring a child from India?  I know that's a lot to ask in view of our economy, but when you break it down to just over a dollar a day, can you swing it?  In addition to financial support that will make a difference in the life of a child (and his/her family), your words of encouragement through on-going correspondence will be treasures to him! 

Clicking this badge will take you directly to children in India; if you sponsor a child, would you let me know?  I'd love for you to share a picture of your Compassion son or daughter; if you let me know in advance, I might even get to meet him/her!

It's not just that I need you (which I do…); these kids need you.  I just checked and there are 76 kids waiting for a sponsor…waiting for you?  That, I don't know.  What I DO know is this: your decision to sponsor now will have immediate effect, that's the beauty of Compassion International.  And in a few months when you receive your first letter?   You'll feel like you won the lottery.

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