Wednesday, March 18, 2009

It's not fair

I'm sitting on the balcony of my hotel room, overlooking the pool. We stayed here last time as well, since our organization has a nice discount.

I'm looking at the tranquil seas of the bay, the jagged hills across the water, and down at the turquoise pool where a father is playing ball with his children.

I watched him trot down the steps to the pool with his son, who is about eight, and lovingly help him take his shirt off, and help him into the pool. You can tell how much this guy loves his family, his kids, he's playing and having fun with them, splashing around. They're giggling and acting like normal kids.

And I'm sitting here, feeling like I'm going to cry.

Earlier we were at the hospital. There was another father there, and a mother, sitting anxiously by the bedside of another child, who was about 6. This father's son had severe malnutrition.

His belly was so bloated, he looked 8 months pregnant.

He was in pain, crying, and had a fever. His arms were thin, his legs swollen. He's critically malnourished.

He could die.

They sat there, helplessly, keeping cool cloths on him, because they couldn't afford to pay for a doctor to examine him before. Finally they got the money, took him in today. We were all set to pay for his exam, to help this poor kid out.

But the part of the hospital that does the exams closed today. It's a government hospital, which means there are strikes sometimes, early closings, etc. because the staff seldom gets paid.

So there the father sat, and I imagine as I write this, he is there still, staring helplessly at the son he loves, trying to comfort him, wondering if he can be saved. He's poor and has no money.

While down below, another Haitian father, who is probably a good man, plays with his son who is healthy and carefree, a son who probably will never go hungry and if he is injured or hurting, will get only the best medical care because his father can afford it.

It's just not fair.

That's life. Sometimes I just take it for what it is, and I go on.

Sometimes, like now, it just makes me cry...


Mary Ricksen said...

Life is so unfair. When I see something that touches me like that, I want to jump in and save the day.
I don't know how you do it. I would be in tears all day, it takes a lot of strength to cry inside and hold us a good facade in public. I sincerely hope that child gets the help he needs. I wish I could go on a trip like that, if only to try and give comfort.
The sad thing is that this goes on in our own country and as a nation it disgraces us.
But people like you and your organization are the hope of the world.
I say it again, Bonnie you amaze me.

Bonnie Vanak said...

Thanks Mary. It is scary how many people in this country are suffering as a result of the recession. I get inspired by people like you who really do care.

Thanks again.