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Driving Miss Daizy

With Daizy Mae Thomas at Grandparent's Day.  Peabody Montessori School in Alexandria.
With Daizy Mae Thomas at Grandparent’s Day. Peabody Montessori School in Alexandria.

A word from Curt:

This is an excerpt from our ebook, Trampled Grass.

The read more: “The O Word” from Trampled Grass

Daizy with her two dolls, Dauphine and Gloria. She made the dresses.
Daizy with her two dolls, Dauphine and Gloria. She made the dresses.

Today is Grandparent’s Day at Peabody Montessori School in Alexandria.

DeDe and I have been invited by Daizy Mae Thomas.

She’s our 9th grandchild.

Read below and you’ll see why.

 

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The final adoption story is extremely personal. The trouble with Africa is that there’s someone to fall in love with daily. My deepest love affair here (after my sweet wife DeDe) is named Daizy. That’s her on the chapter cover photo in her Aunt Jemima outfit cooking up some matoke.

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Daizy Mae Thomas and her mother, KB.

She and her adoptive mother, KB Thomas, lived with us for five weeks. As Daizy, a precocious 8-year-old, walked through the long Ugandan adoption process, we realised it’s not for the faint of heart.

Nor for the thin of wallet.

It’s a test of endurance. KB, who serves as student director at my almamater, was compelled to finish this project.

Daizy and KB’s story is one to tell: She is a member of the Alur tribe. KBmet her in an Up Country orphanage several years ago.

Her mother is dead. She’s never seen her father who purportedly lives in the Lake Victoria Islands.

Daizy’s grandmother, lovingly known as Jajja, takes care of ten grandchildren/dependents.

At some point Jajja, decided the orphanage was the best place for Daizy. Don’t ask me why she chose Daizy and not one of the others.

I believe it was an act of love.

When KB began the adoption process, Jijja made the decision to allow Daizy to go to America.

It couldn’t have been an easy choice. Some people might criticise Jijja for giving up the rights to a granddaughter.

Once again, I choose to view it as sacrificial love in action.

I want the very best for you.

As the adoption process slowly meandered through embassies,government offices, and attorneys, KB and Daizy came to live with us. That’s when I fell hopelessly in love with Daizy Mae Thomas.

Others might questions KB, a single mom, on her sanity in spending a king’s ransom on being a single mom to an African girl.

It’s just what compelled people do.

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                                                                Daizy Mae Thomas and Emma Iles Arua, Uganda December 2013

There’s an oft-told story of a boy walking along the beach. A high tide has deposited hundreds of starfish on the sand. The boy is picking up starfish and tossing them back into the ocean.

An older and wiser adult scans the vast beach covered in starfish. “Son, do you really think you can make a difference?”

The boy deftly frisbees another starfish into the the ocean. With a satisfied smile, he says, “I sure made a difference for that one.”

Here’s to the difference makers.

Folks like KB and thousands like her.

Trampled Grass is an ebook short story collection of our time in Africa. Learn more at www.creekbank.net
Trampled Grass is an ebook short story collection of our time in Africa. Learn more at www.creekbank.net

Read “The O Word” from Trampled Grass

About Curt Iles

I write to have influence and impact through well-told stories of my Louisiana and African sojourn.

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