Donald is a man we have been treating in our medical clinic since last November. A door had fallen on his foot in October during the Hurricane that hit Haiti. He came to us needing dressing changes from a foot amputation. We knew we were in this for the long haul because the local hospital had really done a hack job taking his foot off at the bridge and it literally looked like it had been cut with a hacksaw. I will spare you the gruesome pictures. The skin hadn’t been pulled together; there were no stitches at all! Makayla happened to be in the clinic one of the first few times he came in and she was assisting Kelby, who works in our clinic. Donald happened to look at his foot for the first time and he started to pass out on Makayla. To hear her tell the story it was quite traumatic! In January, infection started to set in and an anonymous donor paid for him to have another surgery! We are absolutely amazed at how well his foot looks now! The miracle doesn’t stop there. His foot was amputated at a very difficult place and we were sure that he would not be able to obtain a prosthetic, but we thought one of the sleeves that prosthetics use before they put their limb on would be helpful for his new skin since the terrain is so tough in Haiti. So we started exploring all of our options. Just this week we were notified that a prosthetic team is coming the beginning of June and we contacted them about Donald! One Leg Up On Life Foundation assured us they could make a prosthetic for Donald. We have also found a physical therapist to work with him because he has been on crutches since October. Through these many months our family has become close with Donald. We’ve visited with him in his home and shared the gospel with him. Donald is a Christian and attends a local church. I would truly call him a friend. I remember when he was in the hospital after his surgery and he would call Meredith nightly letting her know how he was. I also remember Donald bringing Meredith a bracelet for her birthday; this was a huge gesture because of the poverty that everyone lives in here. Donald has a beautiful wife and several children. We are so excited for him and all that God is doing in his life. Gwyn
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In April, we had a church from home come spend a week with us. Wakefield Central Baptist Church and the Creech family served us and the ministries we work with here in Haiti well. We had a great time and they really ran hard all week. Sunday they visited a local church where Troy preached the beginning of a revival; we had just enough time to grab a bite to eat before we swept them away to the Filipino UN! The rest of their stay they spent working in our clinics and serving some local orphanages teaching swimming lessons and a financial class along with devotions and loving on some kids at a local inpatient malnutrition clinic. Our week was packed! We had a great time doing ministry with them and we are looking forward to them bringing back another team from Wakefield! Gwyn
I’d like to tell you that everything with both of the clinics is beautiful and dandy all the time. But, as with most things, that isn’t the whole truth. We have a set of twins named Loveson and Lovelika. Their mom brought Lovelika to us eight weeks ago, and brought Loveson about six weeks ago. She had several strikes against her because she missed a week and offered no explanation as to why she never showed up. Last week, the kids had lost weight again, meaning that I had to kick them out if they didn’t gain this week. This morning as I looked at their recorded weights, my heart dropped. The protocol that we follow is very strict. If the patient misses more than two weeks, they are kicked out. If they aren’t following the rules, they are kicked out, and if the child isn’t gaining weight and there is no medical reason for why they shouldn’t be gaining weight, they are kicked out. “There’s no way these kids should weigh less than the day that you brought them here, what are you doing with the Medika Mamba? These kids certainly aren’t eating it.” The mom continuously denied giving the Mamba away or eating it herself. After we talked in circles for a few minutes, I had to tell her that I could no longer keep her kids in the program if she wasn’t going to be truthful with me. Angrily, she got up and left, her two sick babies in her arms. The majority of our moms are dedicated to seeing their children journey back to health, but every once in a while we get these moms who don’t, and there’s nothing we can do for them. When we were visiting an inpatient malnutrition clinic called “Real Hope for Haiti,” the director gave me some of the best advice. She said, “You can’t love a child more than their parent does.” We can give them all the Medika Mamba and medicine and love that we can, but if their parent isn’t invested in seeing them on the road to recovery, then there’s nothing we can do. This is the hard part, the people who take advantage of the help you give. Please pray for Loveson, Lovelika, and their mom, that she will realize that her children are sick and dedicate herself to their recovery.
I recently went back to the states for a quick trip to pick up our car and take it to Florida and realized a couple of things. The first was it took more faith for me to sign the car over to somebody that I have never met than to move my family to Haiti. Think about it for a minute. We’ve had this car since it was brand new. It had 14 miles on it when we bought it. I know every rattle, ding, and stain in it. This car is like one of my kids. So, there I was, signing over one of my kids…..well, maybe not to that extreme, but you know what I mean. Then it hit me, I haven’t really let everything go. There it is. I just said it. I was having an issue not because of handing the car over, but instead hanging onto one more thing. How many times in our lives do we hang onto things only to realize that if we just let go, greater things are on the way? Secondly, while I was home without my family, I realized quickly how Haiti is truly my home. God has been working on me to be more content in whatever place or situation He has me in at that moment. I don’t mean to be complacent, but rather content. We miss you and we appreciate your prayers. If you would like to donate to the “Get the Prices some wheels” fund please don’t hesitate. Donate at PricelessGrace.com. As always, we appreciate your prayers and support. Troy