Last week I was with the Mission Team, showing them where the family they had been building a new home for was moving from. We visited their old shack, spent time in the community, and just as we were about to leave I was introduced to a little boy. This boy was about to change my day, and I was about to have the privileged of changing his! He had a really badly infected thumb. Swollen so badly that it looked more like a disfigured big toe than a thumb. I was amazed!
The team went back to the hotel, to enjoy a couple of hours of swimming and free time to celebrate the end of their hard work... I went off to the hospital with Davidson - after finding someone else to lend him a pair of flip flops, as he had none. Alessandro, my Italian friend, drove us to the hospital, where Davidson was treated to a coke and a bag of crisps - he hadnt eaten anything yet that day. He also used a flushing toilet for the first time in his 7 year existence!
The doctor did his thing, pus oozed everywhere, Davidson screamed and wailed and got really distressed which was horrible - but ultimately he had to have his thumb drained or risk loosing it or getting a nasty blood infection. The nice part was I got an amazing hug when it was done....
Then it was off to the pharmacy to buy his antibiotics and painkiller and new dressings. We took him back to the community and told 3 people exactly how he needed to take his meds, and how to clean and care for his thumb... All in all it cost $100 dollars.
Part of me felt cross that his thumb had gotten into that state - caused by a splinter! But when you realise that his Mother has no job and that there is no doctor popping into the community and no clinic there - that transport to get to the nearest clinic would be more than she could afford, never mind the medicine etc, it does make you think doesnt it. Life isnt as easy and simple as we often think it is. You never know what the day ahead might bring....
Its exciting to think that for a few dollars you can save someones thumb from being amputated.... its also a massive responsibility to keep your eyes open for what the real needs are around you!
Im not adding photos because they are gross and you might be about to eat some greeny/yellowey soupy type thing....!!