Five weeks ago, I arrived back in Uganda. I hate saying this because it means I only 3 weeks left here.
But I remind myself every day I have in Uganda is a blessing.
I’ve learnt a lot.
Friendships have grown deeper, new connections have been made and wonderful experiences have happened.
Like visiting the zoo and holding a huge snake, feeding a lion, and interacting with so many amazing animals.
Reunions with friends.
Some not so great but moments of growth.
White water rafting was one.
I’ve always wanted to do rafting and I thought no better place than the mighty Nile river.
So a group of us volunteers decided to go.
I had talked to others who had done it and they said it was great fun, so I was excited.
The first rapids were fine, in fact I thought they were a bit boring. Little did I know what was up ahead.
We hit a grade 6. A long rapid with a strong undertoe.
Let me just say we weren’t meant to hit a grade 6, but somehow our boat drifted into it.
I was pushed under the boat.
Everything went slow motion.
As I was being thrown around in the water, struggling for breath, I thought of my family back home, my life up to that point, had I done everything I was called to do in this life. Deep thoughts.
I came up for air but found I was trapped under the side of the raft, finally the guide managed to pull me out and onto the upside down raft. I was still clutching tight to the paddle. ( don’t ask me why.) Josh ( the guide) shouted to hold on, but as I looked up another raft came crashing down on top of us.
White water, couldn’t breathe, fatigue. Trapped again under something.
The overwhelming feeling that I was going to die.
Little voice in my head said “Time to give up fighting.”
Then pure sweet lifegiving air, and a canoe who took me to a raft.
Smooth waters. Safety.
I’ve never felt that close to death before.
Was I? I don’t know. Nile river rafting has never lost anyone.
But the experience gave me a reality check.
Life is fragile, priceless and the future isn’t promised.
Am I living a life, that if today was my last day,
I could look back and say “I gave it all” “I made my life count.”
Do I love enough, care enough, am I leaving foot prints of good behind me?
Do I realise that each day has a purpose, and reason.
Life is a miracle and I must make it count.