She is 8 and was burned by noodle soup. As is common here, toothpaste was immediately applied to the burn, sealing the heat in, insuring a more serious injury than necessary. They put tomatoes, too. I can hardly get angry anymore. The poor are uneducated. They do the best they know how. Little Loida was taken to the hospital where she stayed for 6 days. This is how she looked when she was discharged.
A missionary couple, friends of ours, found her and brought her to us. It took several hours to debride the burn. The poor little girl had been through so much at the hospital. She screamed and kicked, we actually had to hold her down. The pain is awful when the infection is so deep. It eats away at the flesh and can be excruciating. She stared at the wall hardly blinking after we put the gauze on and wrapped her up. I couldn’t blame her.
After 24 hours, this is how her wound looked. The bottom part had already healed.
After 48 hours, she was up coloring and playing a little. She even smiled. Her shoulders are raw, there is just a thin layer of skin left to cover the meat underneath. When she screams it hurts, it really does, I know. But God is gracious and He alone knows why this family, why this little girl, and why this time. We know God is at work in their hearts, not just tenderly touching Loida.
NOTE: A special note to those of you who have sent gauze and antibiotic cream over the last few months… this is when it is so important. I was able to open my cupboards and all the medicine and wrap I needed was there. Thank you and know your donations are so very important. We cannot buy non-stick gauze here and the antibiotic cream from North America puts any antibiotic cream here to shame.
Our policy generally is, that if the phone rings more than 20 times, it’s an emergency. We lay in bed, looking at the clock, and listening to the phone. 3:30 am. The caller was persistent. It was our security guard, obviously agitated. There was an ambulance outside with someone asking for help…
Evan went running down the stairs. The ambulance attendant not very calm, stated that the girl in the back was hemorrhaging to death from a burst appendix. Evan was aghast. Why did they bring her here? The hospital is just 3 minutes away! Why make a pit stop here? He ordered the ambulance away and came upstairs.
We sat in the living room, in the dark, both of us thinking the same thing. Five years ago, this family’s second daughter died from meningitis in the same hospital. We were sure the family was terrified. Evan got dressed and rushed over to the hospital. The ambulance was still outside, the girl inside on the stretcher in agony, and the ER doctor telling them to go somewhere else. Evan walked in and demanded they look at her. Of course, they did and of course they admitted her but only because Evan was there to fight for her.
She was never diagnosed with much and she wasn’t given anything. Inconclusive blood tests, intravenous fluids… whatever happened to the hemorrhaging appendix, we don’t know. But we’re used to that kind of thing now. A UTI was sure… She was discharged after 12 hours and yes, they brought her back here. After 4 days of rest, a course of antibiotics, and some TLC in our own little ICU, she was up bouncing around and ready to go home.