I don’t even know what to say.
I write when my heart is heavy. Yet it’s like I’m so numb by what’s going on I can’t even explain it. It’s like living a dream… but not those sweet fairy tale dreams that I wish for. It’s the nightmares. The ones that never stop. It’s reality. It’s life.
But it’s not a true nightmare for me. I’m just watching it mainly. I’m comfortable. Sure, not near as comfy as if I were stateside, but I’m well. I have what I need. But not my neighbors. They’re suffering. Their nightmare continues on even after they wake up. They’re not watching it, they’re living it.
The motorcycle taxi driver quoted one of my employees how much it would cost for her to get a ride to and from La Limyè. It was half of her daily wage. Which is a fair wage. But with gas off the street being $20 a gallon, what do you expect… instead she walked the several miles home in the pitch black because there are no streetlights. It’s not fair.
They tell me of a lady who was pregnant but because of no diesel at the hospital that runs off of generators she died. Her husband watched his daughter or son kick in their mamas stomach for a little bit longer until he or she died too. It’s not fair.
I told them we were almost out of cooking oil- something that is used everyday here since there is no McDonald’s to run by. I usually buy in the 5 gallon jugs which they said will now cost us about $50USD. It’s not fair.
I get on FB and I see everyone so happy going to football games or family get togethers or shopping with friends and a part of me wants that. Part of me doesn’t want to watch the hungry get hungrier because of injustice. I don’t want to feel guilty that I have 4 boxes of cereal in my pantry or even a pantry at all. Sometimes I want to dream that I’m blinded by it so I can use a hairdryer in my perfectly pre set temperature house, put on mascara that won’t melt away, head to Chick-fil-A la where they cook the food for me and then go over to Target to buy worthless things without feeling like I’m abandoning my friends. That’s what I kind of want at times. And I’ll be so thankful when that blessing comes. And one day soon that’s what I’ll do I’m sure… but what kind of dream is that? Even when I get to return to the States for a visit I’ll never be able to forget what I’ve watched unfold. I’ll never be able to accept how easy life can be for some and how utterly dark and hopeless it is for others. I’ll probably never stop feeling guilty for having a passport. Because I get to run away if I want to. I get food stamps if I want them. I get Medical care if I need it. And yet without that passport La Limyè wouldn’t be in existence- so yes I’m still so thankful.
But my heart hurts for these people. For innocent lives that continue and continue to one, be forgotten by the outside world and two, be pushed to near breaking point over and over again.
We do what we can here at La Limyè to lessen the load off our neighbors shoulders but it never seems like much.
I use to want my girls to grow up here and then go out into their own country and make a difference, love others, be a light. And I still do in a way, but also I just want to shove them in my suitcase and get them as far away from the ongoing nightmare as possible. I want them to learn gymnastics or piano or softball. I want them to know what it’s like to play on a jungle gym or giggle through a car wash or get a free toy every time you buy a Happy Meal. I want them to be safe and secure and I can’t offer them that here. Nobody can. And yet they’re still so much more secure than our neighbors.
But here we are in a country that I’ve called home with people I call family and though I do life with them and sit with them and hear about their struggles and taste and see a small fraction of what real life for some of them really is like, I’ll still never truly know what it’s like to choose the next meal or choose to buy Tylenol for a sick child.
And so my heart hurts for the hurting. They deserve better. Oh I wish you could meet them. Their strength is beyond comprehension. Their faith is literally to die for. Their determination and their courage and their love is what keeps them beautiful. Amidst so much poverty and destruction and unfairness, I look up to these people. Life is unfair and yet they keep on living.
And so there you have it… my bleeding heart all poured out, trying to explain my feelings. Counting my blessings and wishing I could give it all away.
Pray for my neighbors today. I wish you all could meet them.
You’d meet strength in a whole new way.
You’d feel love in a whole new way.
You’d fight for justice in a whole new way.
The recent turmoil on this island is mainly due to not having any diesel or gas delivered. We have fuel on the island, plenty of it. But one of the gangs has blocked the roads where the fuel ports are located and any truck that tries to leave to deliver gets kidnapped and robbed. The gang announced that if the prime minister steps down, they will allow fuel to be delivered. If he doesn’t step down, this will continue on.
For now hospitals, banks, factories, taxi services (which is the main transportation for Haiti), cell phone towers, and schools are either shut down completely or working at minimum capacity.