i, laura, have been back from my mission trip, to pine ridge native american reservation, for some time now, but it’s taken me longer than i expected to gather my thoughts and write this post. this trip was one that i will never forget because of the children that i met and the community that i got to know in south dakota. pine ridge reservation is the poorest native american reservation in the country and one of the biggest. the reservation did not even look as if it belonged to this country, yet alone somewhere just a handful of hours away from my house. i expected the people there to be unwelcoming, broken, and bitter; however, i was completely wrong. the adults were a little shy but very thankful that we would play with their kids and take the time to gain an understanding of the conditions there. i was introduced to the vicious poverty cycle that the reservation has been stuck in for years. the children were such a blessing and so happy and hopeful given their surroundings. it was such a blessing to spend a week there and i hope to go back someday.