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One Child at a Time

By Lisa Benitez

I had a dream in which hundreds of eyes were looking at me. A voice said, "These are the eyes of the children of the world. Never turn away from them." If you look into the eyes of children long enough, along with the pain and the suffering you will see tremendous hope, joy, and love. The children I teach on the reservation give me so much more than I can ever give them.

This summer one of my eleven-year-old students has come to stay with my son and me. Both his parents, alcoholics, were murdered when he was very young. Although the alcohol has left him with severe learning problems, he was blessed with a most gentle spirit and tremendous artistic talent. I have enrolled him in a summer art class at our community college. One child at a time is the way we will heal this world.

Lisa Benitez is a special education teacher on a Navajo Reservation in Kirtland, New Mexico.

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