What started as a horrific sight last week, has turned into a journey of faith for the Charles family. They came to our clinic last week desperately seeking help for their child, Muraelle, who suffers from a retinalblastoma.
The horrific photo I posted last week drew lots of attention, and that was the intent. This boy needed attention FAST, and though I hesitated posting it, I decided that it was worth the risk to get him help. It worked. In a few hours, it had been shared 27 times and I was already receiving emails and messages from all over the United States, from California to Boston to Florida and lots of places in between. On our first day of seeking help, we were turned away from four hospitals and it was devastating.
Muraelle wouldn’t take his medicines, and hospitals were unwilling to give him what he needed by IV. So we prayed…. We had to resist the temptation to panic and take things into our own hands. We decided to trust God even though advice was coming at us from thousands of different directions. God said, “Be still and know that I am God.” We decided to start fresh this morning with a new plan of action. The Charles family arrived at Hope Center promptly at 7:30 as I had asked and we began working with Muraelle to see how we could get him to take his medicine. We finally found that a sippy cup with grape Pedialyte made him willing to drink his medicine and even ask for more. We celebrated the first dose of antibiotics in his little body and loaded up in the truck. We had heard from someone at Bernard Mevs and found out that although Haiti had a holiday today, the CT lab was open! We arrived at the hospital and there was practically NO ONE in line.
On an average day, people wait for hours and hours to be seen. All we had to wait for was for someone to come take the money for the scan! In no time we were in the CT truck and trying to figure out how to get this little spit fire to lay still. They decided he needed sedation. He’s a strong little guy! Even with sedation, his father had to hold him down, but we got the scan!!
Next we headed to St. Damien’s hospital to ask for copies of his medical records. Within about 30 minutes, we had put in the request, paid, and were headed back to the truck. Both the CT results and the chart copies will be ready tomorrow.
So we returned to Hope Center (after grabbing some YUMMY beans and rice on the street) and the new team from Hattiesburg, MS, was unpacking and preparing for the rest of the week. Within minutes, Tony introduced me to a Dr. Jim Brown….ophthalmologist. Yep! As usual, God provides what we need when we need it…this time WHO we need. Dr. Brown dilated and examined Muraelle’s good eye and said he doesn’t see any spreading of the tumor to the other eye. That’s good news! He did say that his first course of action would be to seek to remove the eye that has the tumor for palliative care. He also said that if he does not get help soon, he could die. I’m sure he thought that what he was telling me sounded grave, but actually I focused on the word “could” and held onto the hope that he COULD live! God is opening doors, and we will continue to walk and sometimes even push through them. We don’t know where we are going with all of this, but one thing is for sure…we are trusting HIM. Please continue to pray for Muraelle. Pray that he continues to take his antibiotics and pain meds. Pray that God leads us to the person who can remove the bad eye. Pray that IF he needs further care in the states, that God will walk us through that process and open more doors. Thank you for your prayers!!!