One of our children, Jean Paul had become very sick. The doctors say it was witchcraft that caused him to look in the eyes of death. "The boy from the hopeless family" they called him at the hospital, other called him the "dead-boy". His features reminded me of the pictures on tv from the 1984 Ethiopia famine. Big eyes laying deep in their hollow eye sockets. Hip bones pointing through the cloths. Arms and legs that are no more than bones with a thin layer of skin to make it look human. Mouth and teeth crusted from dehydration.
An empty IV bag by his bed. Other patients begging me: "Take the boy for he wil die tomorrow."After a more than 6 hour fight with lazy medical personal who did not show any concern nor care for their patients, and especially did not care for "the dead boy" we had convinced them to get an ambulance readu so we could transport Jean Paul to Kigali, where we could care for him and make sure he would receive the care he needs in order to save his life.
Jean Paul will survive! He is recovering from a double surgery, where maggets and other "black things" that are related to witchcraft (according to the doctor), were taken out of his stomach. He is eating well now and will soon be released form the hospital.
As Jean Paul is recovering he has made some conclusions that break my heart:
"Nor my father nor my mother have visited me, he said with tears in his eyes. My brother stole from the children and spend the money from sold items on prostitutes, not my medicine. My sister wears my cloths and buys buscuits for herself all the time, and I lay here naked and hungry.
The people who have received money to support me over the last years have not asked about my wellbeing, nor visited me in all these weeks.
I do not dream about my future, because to want, means to get hurt."
When we asked him what stood out as postivie to him within the current situation he replied: Mama and Papa Nani and Stella are the only people that have ever cared for me and loved me. To be together is what makes me want to live and dream!"
What can I say... When people around you are so busy to survive their trauma's and poverty and simply can not care about those around them as it hinders their own survival, and all you have is you...
I know that some of you know these feelings, I know those feelings. When you cry for help and no-one seems to hear you. When you stop dreaming because your dreams have been crushed too many times. When you suffer yet no-one reaches out to help you.
May Jean Paul's final conlusion of truth become your conclusion and testimony of truth:
"I know God loves me and has plans for my life, because when I was going to die He send people to make sure I was going to come back to life. I have seen God, I know He is true!"
For I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans of hope and a future. Jeremia 29:11