With a smile from a former child soldier

Just have to share this story about Charles, a former child soldier from Gulu in the northern part of Uganda. I know Charles  through the project that I work with since many years: The World´s Children´s Prize www.worldschildrensprize.org.

Charles  was kidnapped and forced in to the LRA – Lord Resistance Army in Uganda – when he was about 10 years old. He was a soldier for over three years. After escaping and getting back in to his community he was later invited to US to cycle around Ohio to raise money for an organization campaigning to make people aware of what happens to children in war zones like Uganda.

Sounded all well. Charles also turned out to be a very good cyclist. But instead of being gratified for his participation he ended up being used as a slave – working for the manager of the project on his farm taking care of and cleaning for the cows, horses and sheep, making fences, moving heavy stones, driving the tractor and loading whatever etc etc. He was not  allowed to eat with the family, not even getting good food. He should just always do what the manager commanded him to do.

Not only that. He had to go around telling about his experiences as a child soldier over and over again at different events. Every time he got re-traumatized and had difficult to sleep because of the nightmares haunting him. The organization said they supported the building of a school in his home village and that his family back in Uganda was getting money. But no money was sent.

Charles finally escaped after finding out how to use internet and getting in contact with an other former child soldier who had made her way in the US – writing a book and getting established in the society. Now Charles lives with a friend and has got help from a lawyer to work on his status in the US, studies English and want to take a drivers license to get himself a good job.

He says his experiences of humiliation and exploitation in the US have been even worse than being a child soldier. Because he was forced to be a soldier, but he chose voluntarily to come to the US.

I met him recently when I went to the US for some meetings. We sat in a café talking for quite some time. So long since we met! Then we had a tapping session together with another friend, Tasnim, on a bench in the Boston Common Park. It was the best and most peaceful place we could find even though it was cold under the full moon of November. 

Charles and Tasnim in Boston Common Park. We are all friends from The Wolrd´s Children´s Prize.

Some days later I talked to Charles over Skype:

”When you started the tapping I wondered really what that was all about. But I thought: “Let me try.” And just after a moment I started feeling really, really good. It was GREAT! I felt so relaxed and warm even though we were outside and it was kind of cold. (laughter)

That evening I went to bed at 8.30. I never used to go to bed that early! And I slept till past 8 am the next morning. I slept like the day I was born! Like a baby! I didn´t wake up even one time during the night. Before I only slept one-two hours at a time. I have a lot of medicines for sleeping. But they never gave me this kind of sleep. I could have slept even longer, but my neighbour knocked on my door.

I love this tapping very much. I feel really, really peaceful when I do it. It is so cool! I have to say – that this is the very best science. The one who found this treatment is very smart – he knows exactly how the body works. The tapping goes direct in to to the head, to the mind. I am so happy that somebody could find out such a treatment. It helps me so much. We do it all the time now – me and my friend who was also a child soldier.

Everybody can see how I have changed after this tapping. They say: ”What has happened to him? Why is he smiling all the time.” And I say: ”I´m finally being me again”. I hope that the sad me never comes again. And if he does – I will tap him away.” ( a big smile and laughter)

I am so happy that i finally could meet Charles and give him this tool. When I last met him in 2003 I didn´t know TTT. And Charles didn´t know English. Keep tapping Charles!