When our church first advertised about the Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) event, my husband and I thought this was a great opportunity to show our boys how other children are forced to live. I’ll admit I was quite naive in thinking that this was a small church event and was quite surprised to see it was being held at the Dade County Youth Fairgrounds (DCYF).
Slightly panicked about how Dominic would react I immediately began prepping him in the car. “So Dominic this is at the Youth Fair grounds, ya know.. be there.. the fair. Except .. their is no fair.. but their are people there..” 955 volunteers to be exact! As we stood inline to check in, Dominic calmly turns to me and says, “I don’t know how exactly you expect me to feed these starving children I can’t cook.” (Sigh.. here we go folks!!) “Dominic your not cooking anything, we are building packets and boxes of food.” “Oh..”
We check in and immediately are handed hairnets. Dominic hates ANYTHING on his head, quite miffed that he was forced to wear this, as we sit in the midst of 955 people the meltdown begins! “I don’t understand WHY I HAVE TO BE HERE!! I didn’t want to LEAVE MY HOUSE, I told you I CAN’T FEED THESE STARVING KIDS CAUSE I CAN’T COOK AND NOW I HAVE TO WEAR A HAIRNET!!!! WHY DO I HAVE TO BE HERE TO BEGIN WITH!!!!???” …. (Deep breath) “Dominic… we are here to teach your brother to appreciating the food God provides us.” Dominic still not satisfied with that answer turns to Gabriel and says, “WHY CAN’T YOU JUST EAT THE FOOD MAN!!!!!!!????” (Man snickers behind him.)
The presentation begins and the Pastor is detailing all the countries FMSC has assisted in over the last 25 years. I am completely engrossed and amazed at the magnitude of this organization when suddenly, “WHY CAN’T THESE PARENTS JUST GET JOBS TO FEED THEIR STARVING KIDS?????!!!!!” (Barely able to breath I hiss softly) “BECAUSE DOMINIC!!! If they could find jobs in NIGERIA THEY WOULD!!!!! STOP TALKING!!!!”
We break up into groups and armed with my duo I drag a complaining Dominic to the only job now available, sealing the packets. “IIIIII CCAANNNTTT DO IT!!!!!!!” “YES YOU CAN!!!!” “NNNOOOOO I CAAANNNTTT!!!” “YYYEESSSS YYYOOUUUU CAAANN!!” “NNOO I CCAANNTTT” (I’m despite, I’m loosing my cool, I’M BEING STAIRED AT!! I do what suddenly becomes instinctive with my children, I begin to yell in Spanish. “DDAAALLLYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!” And he’s off. For the next hour amidst my screams of ‘FASTER!!’ in Spanish, Dominic and I successfully complete the task at hand, only fending off 1 unsuspecting staff member who attempted to interact with a condescending Dominic.
Now finished and seated, we await the following instructions and thrilled to hear we have successfully completed close to 200,000 prepared meals being shipped right away to a Country in need. The Pastor thanks us for our participation and invites us to pray over the pallet of food before we are dismissed.
They close out the presentation with a picture of a 3 year old girl from Haiti found the day of the earthquake. She was only 14lbs and severely malnourished, admittedly the picture was brutal to see; followed by the after picture of her 6 months after the FMSC program now a somewhat healthy 33lbs. I am overwhelmed by the magnitude of this organization and mentally making note of the website for promotion when.. He cracks..
“IIIIIIII CCAANNT TAKE THIS!!!!!!!!!!!! I CAN’T TAKE THIS ANYMORE!!!!! I CAN’T TAKE THESE HAITIAN BABIES!!!!!!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT COUNTRY??????????!!!! YOU MADE ME COME HERE!! !!!!! I DIDN’T WANT TO LEAVE THE HOUSE!!! YOU MADE ME FEED CHILDREN WHEN I CAN’T COOK!!!! I HAD TO WEAR THIS HAIRNET AND NOW I JUST WANT TO GO HOME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” (Check please!!)
I said the only thing I could think of to calm him down, until the crowd dispersed. “Dominic… I am going to knock you out RIGHT HERE!!!! For your own safety of THOSE AROUND YOU!!!!!!! JUST STOP TALKING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”
Perhaps next year.. I’ll pick a different time slot..