Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Haiti Journal, June 30, 2008

(Monday) I don't know why but it feels like it should be Wednesday already. The week seems to be going by so slowly, much slower than last time I was here. It's definitely slower than I expected. This isn't a bad thing.
I wonder if Daddy has gotten an appointment with a surgeon to discuss his aneurysm. I wish I could be in touch to see what is going on with that situation. (Update: My dad has an aneurysm in his groin that had his doctor concerned. After consulting with a surgeon they decided on medication coupled with a "wait and see" approach and my dad has less pain and is doing well.)
After breakfast we split into two teams. One group went to the Bord Mer school (next door to the mission) and the other team went to the LaSalle school. Both groups painted the school benches in the classrooms. I went to LaSalle.

It took about 20 minutes to walk the trail to LaSalle. The experience with the high tide made several people hesitate to travel via the beach again. Thankfully the path had dried out from the rain yesterday.
(Everywhere we walked we had an entourage. Here, Missy walks ahead of me with our companions.)

The kids all gathered to watch us from the windows and doorways. It didn't take long to paint and we had fun playing around with the children for a few minutes.

While we were painting a man named Sonny found Missy to tell her about a new mother that wanted our prayer. The bgm girls know Sonny so Missy told him we would go to the woman's house to pray for her as soon as we finished painting. We probably would have stopped painting and gone at that moment if we knew what awaited us.

When we got to the two room house (above) we found a young woman of 23 or 24 lying on her stomach facing right. She was lethargic and did little more than look at us. As Missy spoke to the woman, with the assistance of Sonny, I moved into the 2nd room. Lauren Hurst was standing by a bed with two tiny babies. Each little girl's head would fit into the palm of my hand.
We learned that the young woman had given birth to triplets last Friday (the 27th) and one of the babies had died on Sunday. Of the two remaining babies only one was somewhat responsive. The mom was paralyzed on her left side and below her waist. This was most likely from a stroke according to our nurse Jenny.
When Missy finished praying over the young mother she came into the room. She stood next to me and looked at the meager little ones made smaller by the enormity of the full-sized bed. As soon as she saw the babies Missy began to sob. I don't know what happened but it opened a floodgate for Lauren and me. Missy was so overwhelmed she couldn't speak. She choked out the words, "Will you pray?" as she squeezed my hand. To be honest I'm not sure of what I said but I'm positive God knew what was on my heart and all the hearts around that house.
We left the house and went to one other house to pray before our trek back to the mission. Missy said she would get Charlie and Jenny and go back to see the young mama and her babies.
When we got back to the mission I had time for a quick shower before lunch. I was not going back to LaSalle with Jenny because there were several people already going to see what help could be given. One more person would have been too much. The young woman and her little girls were taken to the hospital. The babies were returned home while mama remained. Jenny said there will be little recovery due to the lack of available rehab for the mother. As heartbreaking as it is you realize there are some things you have to give to God. I would rather rely on His ability to carry this situation than our's.
We ate lunch and had free time before we were given our VBS assignments. In fact we've had a lot of downtime compared to my trip in March. (I am not purposely trying to compare the trips against one another. It's just that I only have one other experience from which to draw upon.)
We received our VBS assignments and had Creole lessons from Marta. Kim MacDonald and I were dying with laughter watching Colby (her son) during the singing. His face was screwed up into a "huh?" expression almost the entire time we sang in Creole.
After Creole 101 Kelly and Missy demonstrated the Chicken Dance and The Macarena for those of us leading the "Big Rooms" at VBS. So we did the CD and the Macarena under the almond trees that run between the cabins. There was lots of laughter and booty shaking. (NO pictures will be posted because I value my life!)

When dinner was over we watched the new New Missions promo video and had a Haiti history lesson from Charlie.
Wow. I've said more than once that the pace seemed rather slow, and it does. However, after reading back through what we've experienced in a day I'm pretty sure the pace is just as God has planned.
We are so spoiled in America. We don't have to give birth in clay covered, stick houses. We don't have to worry about wrapping our babies in 6 inches of clothing because there isn't an incubator for 1lb preemies. We don't have to drink, cook, and bathe from water that is contaminated with filth and feces. And yet, somehow, we still find the ability to whine about our lives and ask God for more.
Father. God. Thank you for ALL you have given me. Teach me to be a better steward of Your love. Oh, God. Thank you.


Anonymous said...

Oh, how I wish I were with you! I can't wait to see and hear more! Keep it coming!

Jennifer said...

Finally got Blogger to give me a comment screen!!! :)

Just as I was getting to your sunset pics on the June 29 entry, I was thinking, "I need a bigger word than amazing...", and then I saw your "Is there a better word than beautiful?" There just aren't words...even for me, only experiencing it second-hand...so I can only imagine when you've experienced it for real!

I really can't come up with words for my feelings as I look at your pictures and read your journal about these trips. The people, the beauty, the poverty...and always, the children...and most of all, God's work in all of it. Amazed doesn't even begin to describe it.

You know the story of those babies hit hard. I think of the six weeks we spent in NICU, and how traumatic it was, and yet to think of those babies in a hut with no medical care...I can't fathom it. You are right...we are so rich. I remember seeing people with babies in NICU that would have been considered *truly* impoverished here...and yet their children were receiving hundreds of thousands of dollars of life-saving medical treatment. We forget that there are places in the world where that does not exist.

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