Today I want to introduce you to the newest addition to All Things New…Hiwerli Dorrin. If this is your first time reading one of our blogs, we are in the middle of a series where we introduce our readers to each of our children on an individual basis. I highly recommend you reading our previous blogs as we have already written about many of our children. To do this, just click here to get to our “blog page” and meet each of our wonderful children.
Hiwerli is our newest addition because prior to our move to Hope Rising, Hiwerli was not with us. We had met her before on numerous occasions, and she is Fedeline’s older sister, but she was not living at the orphanage and we were not taking care of her. In fact, she moved back-and-forth between family members on numerous occasions before finally ending up back with her Mom close to where we used to live. When we were first making the move to Hope Rising, Hiwerli was not really on our radar. She had been with her Mom for a while at that point, and that meant that we were seeing her everyday, but we did not think she would become a part of our family. There were, however, many nights that she slept inside the orphanage gates because her Mom’s home consisted of only one room and one bed and her Mom was only there about half of the time. We have found out since that she lived with her Dad and grandparents for about half of her life and with her Mom for about half of her life. We have also heard (from many people) that her Dad is one of the “troublemakers” in the area and that we should stay away from him. In fact, he has come to Hope Rising only one time to visit and our security guard told us that he was not allowed to ever come back because the only time he came, he tried to steal some of Fedeline‘s toys. On the way out of Hope Rising, the security guard checked his bag and found a box full of toys and hair bows that sponsors had sent, and Hiwerli’s Dad wanted to take them and sell them. To find out more about her and Fedeline’s home life, click here to read Fedeline’s blog, but Hiwerli does not come from a loving environment by any means.
The bottom line is that as soon as her Mom asked us to take Hiwerli, we said yes…How could we not? She was in a horrible position and we already knew and loved her. When we first got to Hope Rising, Hiwerli was absolutely perfect. In fact, she was terrified to make a mistake. She was constantly cleaning up after herself and others, constantly seeking approval from Jess and I, and going above and beyond to make sure that she got to stay here. She had no idea that there was nothing she could do to make us kick her out, how could she understand that? She had been moved back-and-forth for her whole life and she had never really had a place to call her home or a person who really cared about her above everything else. She thought that if she messed up she would lose our love, and she was going to make sure that she did not mess up this time…What a horrible way to live. What a sad way to live your life always thinking that if you did something wrong you would be sent away. In addition to that, Hiwerli was also “sick” for almost the entire first month of living with us at Hope Rising. She was not actually sick, but she thought this was the best way to get our attention, so everyday she came to us and told us she was not feeling well, or she could not eat, or her head hurt. Jessica solved this pretty quickly by telling her that she could not play outside if she was sick, and what do you know, the next day she was better! This type of behavior went on for about a month before she realized she could make a mistake and we would still be there for her. We finally began to see the real Hiwerli.
Hiwerli is as strong-willed as any of our other children. In fact, she is the only one of our younger girls who stands up against Malayika‘s “bossiness” (or leadership depending on how you look at it). She has a strong personality, she is very affectionate, and she is actually quite sure of herself. One of the things that the girls love to do is play hopscotch, Hiwerli is very good at it, and Hiwerli knows that she is very good at it. It is so cute to see her glide through the game, but a lot less cute to have to constantly tell her to, “stop telling other people how good you are.” Physically, she is so tiny that you would never know that she is almost 11 years old. In fact, it can be hard not to baby her because she truly looks like a 6 or 7 year old little girl. She was clearly malnourished early in life and she will not be able to make up for the nutrients that she missed. But it is also really fun to watch someone that small stand up for herself with the older girls. Hiwerli also has a lot of academic potential as she moves into 3rd grade at Christianville school. She was in a much easier school last year for 2nd grade, but she scored very well, and we are hoping that this bodes well for her first year at a much more difficult school.
In reality, we are still getting to know Hiwerli as she has only lived with us for the past 6 months. We know that she is a beautiful, smart, strong-willed, and self-confident child and that she is just now getting the chance to be who she was truly created to be. We cannot wait to see how GOD uses Hiwerli in the future. I do want to close by sharing a story about Hiwerli that happened before she became a part of our orphanage. In fact, it was one of the first trips we took down to Haiti and it was during one of the times that Hiwerli was living with her Mom. She had been spending a lot of time at the orphanage and I had gotten to know her pretty well. In fact, she liked to sit in my lap and she liked for me to play with her whenever we were there. Well, one day, she sat close to me but she would not really even look at me, and it seemed strange. I just started playing with some of the other kids there until Hiwerli started to talk to me through our translator. She kept saying things, but the translator would not tell me what she was saying. Well, I finally convinced him that I would not be mad but I really wanted to know what Hiwerli was saying. Well, it turns out she just kept saying, “I do not like the Pastor anymore.” Of course, I was the Pastor she was referring to, and she just keep saying it over and over. She was on the verge of crying. So, I finally turned to her and showed her some attention and asked, “Hiwerli, Why do you not like me anymore?” Well, the whole problem is that I had been carrying other children around, and she wanted me to only carry her. It was very cute, but it was also very sad to think about how much attention she truly needed and how little she was actually receiving. I can say that now she gets attention every single day, she is loved, and she will never again have to worry about someone sending her away. Thank you for all that you do to help us love Hiwerli and please continue to pray for this child of GOD…Hiwerli Dorrin.