Sunday, July 14, 2013

A year ago....

A year ago today the world lost an amazing women. It's hard to believe it's been a year since Amanda left us here on Earth. Oh how I miss her. I miss being able to shoot her an email and hear about all the craziness of China. I miss her Facebook post and seeing her daily ramblings. There are still days that I do not believe she is really gone. The legacy she left is absolutely AMAZING. There are 100+ lives in the world today because of her. Amanda's last days were not what any of us imagined. No one thought her life would be cut short and that she would leave so soon.

Amanda to this day still inspires me to be a better person. She selflessly gave her life and wants for the needs and wants of the children and people of China she served. She left her comfortable life to be the mom to about 30 babies at any given time. She set aside her needs to make sure her babies were cared for and sought out the best care China could provide for them. She was their mom until their moms got to them. She cared for them like a mother would and provided for them, even though she was only their temporary mom. She knew her role was to care for them until their families came. Granted she missed her babies after they were adopted she knew a permanent family could give them the things she could not.  Because of her selfless love for the children she cared for her heart and legacy lives on in the lives of the children she cared for.

The world needs more people like Amanda who are so willing to give selflessly and expect nothing in return. Amanda truly lived a life no one could ever repeat. Her babies were not the babies most people in China wanted to care for, they were the challenging ones, the ones no one wanted, and the ones left to die. However, within their tiny little bodies Amanda saw a child worth the risk of a heart break and worth every penny she could scrap up. There were so many times Amanda walked in to the orphanage with only enough funds to take on one more child, but she could never say no to a little one who needed her and most of the time she walked out with anywhere from 2-10 babies. I believe there was only one time she walked out with one baby. She never knew where the funds to care for the extra children would come from, but she believed they would show up. Each child to her was an individual whose life meant so much. She took the sickest babies and nursed them back to health, even if that meant spending hours feeding them with a dropper. Sometimes the babies she brought home were so close to death no one thought they would make it, but as Amanda said a little love and a good meal or two can go a long way to save the children. So many times she told me that it was not the food that was saving the babies but the love, care, and a simple human touch that was saving them.

The little 6 from my first year at Starfish. What a difference just 10 days made

"You have never really lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you."

Oh how true is this quote. I know that everyone who knew Amanda knew that she loved the babies and never expected a thing in return. Amanda gave out of her heart to the babies. Her reward was knowing that the children were healthy, cared for, loved, and eventually home with families who loved them. 

I miss Amanda so much as do many other individuals. She changed this world for the better and no one can ever be her. Her legacy is living on and new and great things are on the horizon for her foster home. Things have greatly changed for those that run baby homes in China, but no one is giving up on Amanda's dream. Children are still being saved and cared for because of her. I can only hope that one day I can do half as much for a child as she has. We all need to let the Amanda's in us show, because we can all save at least one child and make a difference to that one.

Amanda and I Memorial Day Weekend 2012. How I miss my dear friend!

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