What’s another couple of kids??

To us at the J10:10 House – exactly what Jesus would do. But to Constance in Kahama, another couple of pregnancies would be a complete disaster.

And so begins another blog that owes half of its content to Jesus and the other half to the ‘Carry On’ team. As usual my life here is a mix of tragedy, comedy, joy and despair. I think it’s called pathos.

The ‘Carry On’ side of the blog commenced when Constance turned up at the J10:10 House in a total fluster. Having delivered eight children she may have been secretly pleased that a by-product of her husband’s motorbike accident and descent into filth and ‘Mossy Foot’ infection was that he had ceased to have designs on her. And then some bloody mzungu (white) turns up and starts showing him respect and love, washing his feet and treating them with anti-fungal cream every Wednesday.

As she said to the long-suffering Mercy and my poor wife Hildah. ‘And now his feet are better, he has no pain, and IT keeps standing up.’

We assumed that the ‘IT’ was not her husband on his newly cured feet, nor even her son Akampurira who can now walk, but a troublesome appendage that has already resulted in eight children that she simply can’t care for. And so Hildah and Mercy carted her straight off to Marie Stopes, and after an operation and two days bed rest Constance will never bear children again. The standing thing will have no serious consequences. There we go, that’s the double entendre part over with. Probably.

And then there were 57. A regular Heinz 57 varieties. Of kids. At the J10:10 House. Well what was I supposed to do?!

So, until yesterday, we had taken responsibility for 4 of Constance and Charles’s six non-adult children. Olivia is now in Tailoring College, and Kathleen, Liberty and Akampurira are resident at the J10:10 House where the J10:10 team is loving them back to life, they are eating well, developing social skills, attending school, getting to know Jesus and becoming normal kids.

Kathleen has a twin, Alex, who has always fared better than the other kids as he was staying at a relative’s house and attending school. Brian, the youngest child was still being breast-fed, and so when we rescued the other children they stayed there. I had hoped that if we removed most of the children then Constance would be able to cope with her youngest. But last week when we visited, Brian was showing all the telltale signs of malnutrition. Leaving him there would have been negligent. Leaving Alex alone with his parents when all his siblings were with us would have been cruel. And I knew what Jesus would do.

So I spoke to the J10:10 team at the J10:10 House and they wanted to take the last two kids from this family and care for them too. We have just enough room for them and God will provide whatever else we need. Because you see……Jesus loves children.

And Constance and Charles were in favour of them coming to live with us too. They know they can’t cope, that this is the best option for all their children, that our God has provided miraculously and that they will see their kids in the school holidays.

With all this time on their hands they will be able to concentrate on the farming project that we have helped them with, and on regaining their self-respect. With all this time on their hands I am doubly grateful for the sterilisation. A God that meets EVERY need! Phew.