An article I just read told me to blog instead of Facebook post… I am not sure how I feel about that, but I will try to be more active here with my blog also…
Life in Haiti is hard. It is harder than I could have ever ever imagined. It is physically draining and even more emotionally draining. My love is made stronger every day, yet my heart cracks a little more at the same time.
Haiti healthcare is less than stellar. I know that America has problems… in fact I am one of the americans with a problem, I have no health care insurance. But in Haiti… it is bad. I could talk for hours on just what I have seen. I could talk for hours more on what others have seen. Let me just tell you that there is no appointment making in Haiti. You go to the clinic/hospital and you sit. Sometimes you sit all day, and still do not get seen by a doctor. This last trip in April I spent countless hours in clinics and hospitals, with no end results.
Many of you have kept up on Facebook, but for those of you that do not know, 7:10 has been working with a 12 year old young man named Renand. He has been blind and suffered with pain and infection in one eye for as long as he can remember. We tried to get him help in January with no help. In April he was the main focus of the trip. After I had returned home from my trip in April I received a phone call from the eye specialist in Haiti (english speaking) to tell me that Renand has cancer of the retina, retinoblastoma.
As much as I prayed for a diagnosis and for pain relief, this was not what I wanted to hear. This young man is living with his older sister, who struggles to take care of her own children and add Renand to that. He goes to school every day, walking well over a mile there and back. He is full of light and kindness, why? why cancer? why God…?
Renand needed surgery, he needed his eye removed. After the call was made, and the decision to have surgery was made, we sent out a call to action. This was going to cost money that 7:10 just didn’t have. We have faithful donors, and we appreciate that immensely…. this surprise just was not in the budget. The Lord provided and we were able to raise 920$ in just 24 hours. Renand had surgery the next day, and spent 4 days in the hospital.
Renand went home and the next day he was in tremendous pain and had a terrible green ooze coming out of the eye socket. Rithza brought him to the local Lifeline clinic and was advised by the doctor to get him back to the hospital. He had an infection. It was to late in the day to go, so the trek back to Port-Au-Prince was made the very next day. After arguing with staff about whether or not they would even see Renand (his follow up wasn’t for days, and he was early!!??) He was finally seen (hours later). Gauze that was used to soak up blood during the surgery was left in his eye socket and was incredibly infected…
Just 48 hours after the removal of the gauze and more antibiotics, Renand is eating and feeling much better. He is ready for his follow up appointment.
10 days post op and it is time for Renands post op visit. While there is no scheduled time for Renands follow up, there is a scheduled day. Another trip to Port-Au-Prince, and another all day outing. Renand is cleared to go back to school and told that when he starts treatment (which we assume will be chemotherapy) he may be to sick to attend school next year, so he should work very hard to finish this year strong. BUT no pathology results are back, so we have no treatment plan. We are told we may not see pathology results until next month? (Something else I dare not question because there probably isn’t an answer) There are two types of retinoblastoma, and depending on the type will determine the treatment. We are praying that the results (where ever they are, all I can imagine is a rotting eye sitting somewhere not getting tested) will show that this is the non invasive type, meaning it is the type that stays put in the eye and doesn’t spread. If it happens to be the type that spreads we will need more scans of his brain to see if and where it has gone.
Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
While we wait for the pathology results please continue to pray for Renand. He has a very long road ahead of him. We are making sure to provide healthy food for him, all of his medicine, and transportation support during this. If you feel led, we will need financial help to continue his care. You can do that by clicking HERE
One need that we are praying about is a bed for Renand. The picture below shows how and where he is sleeping right now. While I have never gone through chemotherapy, I have heard that it is miserable. We would love to provide this child with a comfortable place to lay his head while he is enduring treatment. We can do this for $200.00, again, you can do this by clicking HERE and commenting that your donation is for his bed..
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous hand.
Please keep Ronald and Rithza in your prayers. They are coordinating all of Remands care, and trying to run the foundation. It is never ending for them, and need to be lifted up continuously. Also, pray for me. I have so many questions, and no answers. My Why seems to throw me for a loop all the time. Why is God seemingly throwing these children at me, when I haven’t gone looking or asked for Him to show me the sick children. What am I supposed to do with this? What is His will for me?