As part of my preparation for my trip to India, I read Brene Browne's new book, Braving the Wilderness. She encourages us to have a strong back, soft front, and wild heart.

On this trip, that is what I am attempting to do - have the courage and moral compass that creates a strong back, the vulnerability, openness, and honesty that allows for a soft front, and the bravery and adventure that transform a wild heart.

This trip has been like no other. The joy, courage, and love in the girls of the orphanage where I am working is incomparable, and yet, it reminds me so much of the homeless youth I work with back home.

I have become profoundly aware that no matter where we travel in the world, children all need the same things - for us to show up, to create a relationship with them that starts with giving our heart, and allowing for a place to heal. With that, they have the opportunity to transform from broken children to adults with strong backs, soft fronts, and wild hearts.

Today, we will celebrate Dewali, the Festival of Lights. To get an understanding of this, just Google it and look at some of the pictures. Who better to celebrate such an event with but precious little girls who are so full of light.

About the Author...

EKleftside-street Webfade

I’m Erin, and I’ve used my 15+ years of human services experience working to understand youth who are on the fringes as an attempt to create services that have the potential to change their life trajectory. I get out of bed each morning with a renewed sense of purpose, and I go off to work to play my part. I believe that if we each do our small part, that collectively we have the potential to change the big picture.

To me, this is more than a job; it’s a journey, a mission, a calling, and an honor.

I don’t believe that I have all the answers, but with some regular meditation, a solid support network, and a commitment to this work--no matter how hard it gets, I believe that much can be accomplished.

I invite you along on this journey. Share what you have learned, what keeps you going, and what makes you crazy. None of us are in this world alone and I am grateful that we can walk beside each other even if only for a few moments.

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