Where to even start...let me start with an apology. Life in Ecuador has become my norm, I no longer find things as amazing and exciting as I used to which causes me to lack things to write about but I know that you all are missing out on what is going on. I will not make any promises but I will try to write more often...
I am currently in the states working, I was given to opportunity to work at DC Children's. It is close to home and close to my new nephew! Ive been getting to spend time with him and my sister as often as possible! I am also working at Anne Arundel attempting to make as much money as possible in as short of a time.
I'm sure that I could write for hours and still not fill you in on all that has gone on since I last wrote but I will do my best and attempt to not bore you. Things that might be of interest: I contributed to a global health nursing book that was compiled by a UNC Chapel Hill nursing professor that will be released in May! This came about after having two nursing students who came down to volunteer for two weeks doing education and giving basic nursing care.
I am now part of the Ecuadorian team for Operation Smile! I work in the recovery room and occasionally in the OR during the approximate 100 surgeries that we perform every 3 months across Ecuador. This has given me the awesome opportunity to not only work with amazing surgeons, nurses, doctors, and volunteers from all over the world but to also meet amazing grateful families. These people are the most thankful that you can imagine.
Sarah and Natalie came to volunteer! They worked in the gardens and cooked for the elderly. They fed me so well that I was sad to see them leave...it was so nice to eat so many fresh vegetable and have such amazing company!
We fixed Pablo's lip! You will see that I posted some new pictures, Pablo Emelio is the baby that was born with cleft lip. I have been able to spend a lot of time with the family since his surgery, they have blessed me daily. They are a very poor family, the parents both work "daily" jobs making around $5 per day. There are 6 kids at home, they have very little food, live in one room but love each other and life. They are an amazing example of what I hope to be. Pablo was the very first baby born in the community of Paragachi with cleft lip, now he has a perfect lip that was fixed by the surgeons of Operation Smile!
Jessica came, we traveled through the jungle, took a canoe with a native man to see how they live within the jungle. We watched them make pottery, pan for gold, make chicha, how they catch animals, native dance, and ate fresh caught fish cooked in a leaf. We zip lined, hiked, she jumped from a bridge, went to the zoo, walked behind waterfalls, slept on the edge of the river, and traveled over 10,000 ft of altitude. Jess go to give the kids Christmas in the community of Paragachi and love on my kids!
Sarah came to work with Operation Smile!!! Finally! She got to assist us in our surgeries in Quito and then she got to meet my kids and see the community of Paragachi. We visited the communities above Pimampiro and we served the elderly their afternoon meal.
I am working very closely with the President of the community of Paragachi to give the people the resources that are available to them and if the resources are not available creating a way to make them successful. I believe that the future of the community is in the children and I believe that I can help to educate the children to not only better their community but their country.
I cannot tell you how grateful that I am to have been given the opportunity to meet so many of you and have each one you bless my life each in your own way. I thank you all for your continued support and I ask you to keep me in your thoughts and prayers as I will be returning to Ecuador in a few weeks. Love to all....