As I take this day to rest and reflect, I find myself wanting to write. There is so much I could write about. There are new “stories” every day, but I find myself not being able to focus on a single one. I just find my heart feeling so content. It is a strange feeling to just know that there is nothing I am truly “longing” for. There are definitely things I pray and hope for, but knowing that God has planted the desires in my heart has made every bit of anxiousness disappear. He is in control of it all. I am just here to listen to His guidance. I am here to walk in His path for me. I am here to trust in His timing. I am here to do His will, and what an amazing feeling that is!
As I begin every day here in Haiti, I have a plan. My day would not start without a plan (as I am such an organizer,) but I realize that plan will be adjusted or reworked every day! Amazingly, it is the “surprises” during the day that I enjoy most of all. This is because they are the moments that God has set aside to remind me to not take anything for granted. I will share a few of those “surprises” with you even though there are hundreds!
Johnny (about 6 years old)
Three words to describe this boy…curious, joyful, and precious
Johnny is from Port au Prince. He was hurt during the earthquake, and we have yet to find anything out about his parents. He is a “busy body” and doesn’t like to be kept down. Johnny is smart, but is going to be brilliant in no time because he is so curious. I have been able to spend a lot of time with Johnny…trying to keep him off his leg as his infection heals, changing the dressing on his wound, giving him his antibiotics, and just keeping a close eye on him as he explores the world around him. One day Johnny was going up to the clinic with me and he said (in perfect English,) “Mami Weader, I am thirsty.” I said, “Do you know what you just said?,” and he replied, “No!” What a coincidence that I had just gotten a picture of him with a bunch of donated water a few hours before.
Samuel and Alfred (13 year old school boys)
Three words to describe these boys…quiet, funny, and appreciative
Samuel and Alfred are two school boys that were injured. Samuel had a bad infection on his elbow and Alfred had a hematoma on his head. I was able to take them both to a clinic here where American orthopedic surgeons performed small surgeries on them both. Their parents were not present for the surgeries, so I stayed with them to comfort them and make the waiting process easier on them. They were so appreciative for everything that was being done for them. Every day they come and see me for wound checks and dressing changes. I look forward to seeing them each day. They are always saying, “Mesi Mami Heather”…thanking me for doing so little for them. I always respond by saying, “Mesi Jezi!” and they nod their heads.
Denise and Fitson (about 3 years old)
Three words to describe these children: worshippers, hilarious, and cute
Denise and Fitson came to us from Port au Prince. Denise has hydrocephalus and had a shunt placed in her head shortly after she came to Danita’s. She brings joy to everyone that comes in contact with her (and I am no exception to this!) The same goes for Fitson. They may both have special needs, but boy can they light up faces! Fitson giggles like no other child I have ever met, and he literally is the only baby I know that says, “goo goo gaga.” I get the opportunity to do physical therapy with these two, and they are making great strides. There are always wonderful “surprises” like Denise actually enjoying parts of her therapy (she used to scream the whole time) and Fitson sitting up on his own for quite awhile! They both have so much personality and I love that I get to capture all the little moments in their lives!
Jean (last but not least!)
I have no words to describe Jean…he is simply a gift from above! On a daily basis, Jean shows me so much. He is a strong boy despite his size, he is a fighter! I am convinced that he leans on God every day of his life. He is a miracle, and I am not worthy of taking care of him. I am glad I have God’s grace every day as I work with Jean. The Lord has taught me how to watch Jean’s eyebrows to know if he is content, agitated, or sad. He has taught me how to listen to the noises Jean makes to know when he needs certain things like chest therapy, to sit up, or to just be held close to my chest to feel my heart beat against him. There is a reason why God has kept this dear child on Earth, and I know his future is bright!
As I close this blog, I want to encourage everyone reading it to take a look around you. Notice the small things. Notice the things that are given to us free of charge...laughter, friends, blue skies, sunshine, etc. Notice that there are people everywhere waiting for you to “notice” them. Take the time to care, take the time to love, take the time to give thanks for what has been given to you! I know (even here in Haiti) it is easy to get caught up in all the hustle and bustle of the days, but it is important to take time to enjoy and be thankful for it all! Please join me in doing this.