Habitat for Humanity – Sumter, SC: Day 7

Today was a bittersweet day to say the least. It was our last day on the build site, which is incredibly unbelievable. It’s hard to fathom how far my team and I have come, from the bus ride up here where we didn’t know one another, to today where I can call all of them my best friends.

When we all woke up and were getting ready for breakfast, you could feel a bunch of different feelings in the air. We were happy, sad, excited, inspired, blessed, and so many others. We all packed up our shower bags and bags for the day, and off we were to complete our part of the home for the last day. After arriving at the site, we did a little reflection about how far we came, not only as individuals, but as a group…a unified team. We let Bob say a few words, and off we were to finish (kind of) what we started.

Today was an exciting day for me, as I got to use a new power tool. Today, my first task was to use the skill saw to cut the windows out of the OSB. This tool showed me that I really need to work out more as I struggled to lift the tool and keep it in a straight line! Holding up a machine while trying to keep it parallel to the chalk line was way too much multitasking for me. But, I persevered and cut some pretty straight lines. Everyday I realize how proud of myself I am for not only coming on this trip, but pushing myself to constantly try new things. You discover a lot about yourself when you go outside of your comfort zone.

While I was working this morning, classic Bob started on one of his stories and yet again almost brought me to tears. He was telling us how one of the homeowners lived in a home where she could feel the wind coming straight through her house in the winter. It made me so grateful to have a home where I never had to worry about anything like that. The happy ending to this story is that she received a Habitat home, and the best part of the story is what she did when she received the home. She went to one of her new doors and just kept standing inside and then going outside, and said to Bob, “Is this real life? I can’t feel the wind. I have a home where I can’t feel the wind. I have heat in here finally.” It makes me so sad to hear that a necessity such as heat wasn’t available to this lovely lady.

Next was our last lunch together as builders! We had sloppy joes today, and it was definitely the fuel I needed to get through the afternoon. Being the pasty Canadians we are, and it being 28 degrees out, we decided to tan in our jeans and work boots for a bit after lunch. Can’t wait to go back to Ontario and lose this lovely base tan I got this week.

After lunch, as we all kind of expected, we slacked a little bit. It was hard to get work done in the heat, but we finished up what we were doing…until the cutest kid Nicholas came over to play basketball. Of course we couldn’t pass up a chance to ball, so that we did. It was the perfect way to end off all our hard work this week.

I can’t wait for dinner tonight and all our final goodbyes. I know it’s going to be an emotional night for my team and I because we’ve all become like a family throughout this trip. Between the volunteer “professionals” who came for a day, or those who came every day, they truly touched my heart in such a beautiful way. They never gave up on me, even when I was ready to give up on myself. If everyone could be like these men I worked with, I think everyone would be a little bit happier and a little bit more confident.

I’m going to end this post here tonight, and do a reflection on tonight’s dinner and the trip as a whole tomorrow. I can’t believe it’s the end; writing on this blog again has brought upon a new light in my life, and it’s almost a relief to be posting on here again.

Time for dinner at the Hibachi Grill!