Thursday, July 24, 2014

Day 5 - Be still my heart

Today was another one of those days that make you grateful for every single thing in your life.  A day that rips your heart out and you try to hold it together until you get in the bus to return to the Villa.  A day that you won't forget for a long long time.

We spent the morning hours up until after lunch at the children's hospital in Managua.  I need to rephrase that, we spent that time in the hospital housing across from the main hospital building where family members stay and wait for the two 2-hour visiting times that can see their sick and dying children.  It's also a place where some sick kids stay until they get the treatment they need or die waiting.  It was absolutely heart wrenching to fall in love with some of these parents and children and then know what they have to face.  

We had mani/pedi stations set up, bracelet making and a few toys for us to play with the children.  We also were able to pass out some clothes and small toiletry gift bags to everyone.  Through translators we were able to listen to their stories, their hurts, their desires and pray for them accordingly.  It was such an incredible honor & so humbling to be entrusted with this responsibility!

One of our team members shared her personal story about her 5 year old son who almost died in the first year of his life and still lives with the same condition.  She was able to talk about how she survived those months and where she got her strength.  I haven't seen a group yet this week that was so attentive and hung on every single word. She was able to bring hope to them.

When we were done with our time there one of the mothers spoke up and said thank you for listening to us.  Thank you for playing games and dancing with us. Thank you for bringing us joy today.  God Bless You.  

It was so incredibly humbling.

 Gloria, Terry and Maria spent much time with this woman today.  She was unable to be with her child in her hospital room as she lay dying.  She was waiting for the phone call.  She had no family with her.

 This little girl has a bone disease that is causing her bones to deteriorate.  It was fun watching her play and smile all day.  Her father has been told there is nothing more the doctors can do for her, they need to go to another country for medical help.

 Joan is sitting with two men during Samantha's sharing time who both had 
young children under one year old in the hospital in serious condition.

 Samantha fell in love with two boys today, Jose (Left) and Clarence (right).
Jose's grandmother (center) and he have been at the hospital two years.  His kidneys are very tiny and not working very well.  He is waiting for a transplant or he will die.  

These are only a few stories of the many we heard today.  It was a tough day, but I was so proud of my team who never stopped serving and loving these people.  It was hot and very humid, the conditions weren't great, there were so many people that needed attention. I have a team of superstars and they exceeded every expectation today...... again!  So proud of this team! 

After such a heart wrenching morning we were able to have an evening filled with joy and hope.  We returned to Haydee home. (I previously called her Haley.... lost in translation)  When we left her on Monday night we were so broken for her.  On Monday she was in bed in her dark bedroom.  Tonight she was in her wheelchair in the front of the house, wearing a dress we brought her and the cross necklace I gave her.  We came with candles, paper garland and Pizza, her favorite!  She was so happy to see us again and said we are the family she has been praying for.  We are her sisters now!  She had spent the day making each one of us a beaded keychain!

We had dinner and then I was privileged to add her to my list of people I've taught to knit!
This is one bright and talented woman.  She picked up knitting in about 10 minutes!  I'll have to send more yarn with my son Alex's team in a week, because I know she will have used up everything we left her!

 After dinner as most of us sat knitting and talking, Erica played outside with her two children (on the ends) and her two nieces.  Thanks Erica!

This is a different face than we saw on Monday night.  There is joy now!

Tomorrow is our last full day here.  Each day as been long, but the week has flown by.
Both teams will be spending the day with the Villa girls.
More tomorrow..... Goodnight for now!

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