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  • Writer's pictureSuré Tredoux

Patience be patient

We first met Patience in 2018 on a BSR Outreach to Zambia. When she came into the room we could immediately see she was going to be a handful…. And she was. She was hyperactive, very talkative, bossy and loved the camera. She was very comfortable with the Mzungu’s (white people), but when it was her turn to lie down on the BSR bed, it was like trying to get a cat into water.

As time passed and we kept going back to Zambia for the BSR Outreach programme there, she became even more comfortable with the Mzungu’s. Every time we arrived at the School she would come running at us shouting Mzungu, Mzungu. From there she would follow our every move, often being very disruptive trying physically to get as close to us as possible. At times she would hang onto my leg while I’m working on another child.

Eventually I decided it would actually just be best to give her what she wants and I started putting her on my back while I would be releasing another child. She was then perfectly still and well behaved.

She was one of the very fortunate children that was sponsored by the Time & Tide Foundation to attend one of the local schools. She was in class with Miss Naomi who also helped translate for us and was looking after the special needs class at this particular school.

When we went back there in 2019 something had changed with Patience. I couldn’t immediately figure out what exactly, because she still came running to the car when we arrived, shouting Mzungu, Mzungu and then proceeded to help me carry my portable BSR bed.

That day as we started working her teacher Miss Naomi said to her only once that she should sit on the chair and wait her turn. And that is exactly what she did. Child after child she sat there patiently waiting her turn and when it was her turn she laid perfectly still on the bed.

We couldn’t believe it, Patience had a sense of calmness to her that was never there before.

Patience had become patient

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