Hey, this is Abby!
Plans changed quite a bit for our family this summer due to some health issues I’m dealing with. We were supposed to be arriving in Haiti a few days ago, alongside my parents, but Denny and I agreed it’d be best if I stay home this summer to promote healing. This was a very difficult decision as this means our girls will also stay home. They are super bummed, as are we. However, we are confident in our decision, have felt grace from our supporters, and are already seeing the physical benefits to “slowing down.”
Denny is home with us right now and will head to Haiti in two weeks with Grant Everitt and 5 college-aged girls. We are definitely mourning not being in Haiti right now but we are so happy to know my parents are there!
My parents arrived in Pignon, yesterday. They will be there for two weeks.
Here are some thoughts from my mom she sent via e-mail:
we made it! After an almost 2 hrs delay last night (left at 1 a.m. and not 11:15 p.m.), we dozed on the plane and made it to Miami at 7:20, needing to catch our 7:40 flight. SO grateful that our gate was in the same terminal, so we raced down and they unlocked the door to let us on. We weren’t sure about our bags, though, but we praise God that as we waited for them in Port, they appeared! The way our week has gone, we count it all joy and also believe in miracles:-)
We took the same little 6-seater MAF plane, with the same pilot as last year, up to Pignon. It was more fun the second time around, and landing on that long stretch of grass still makes me feel like I’m somewhere very remote…! Pastor came, we pulled in to the compound and got to hug lots of cute children who made their way down the hill to greet us. There are at least 3 new children, with one who came 8 days ago–same story as big Moses whom Lynn told about some months ago, although little Moses is just 1 1/2? years old, and a woman saved him from being thrown in the river by a pregnant mom who couldn’t handle another baby. This little one was then brought to Pastor. Thank you all for your life-giving contributions to this work!
Had a lovely lunch with mango, pineapple, banana, avocado, corn/peas/hot dogs, and bread with peanut butter. I did eat lots of fruit as I never know when we’ll get so much to choose from:-)
Pastor has made some changes in the kitchen–a sink is installed instead of dishes sitting tubs with water carried in; the floor is tiled instead of dirt, and a set of cupboards was installed. We also have tiled bathrooms now, which certainly is a mental plus when using it. Also a screened in window in the front of each room, and the new cement roof which was installed after our trip last summer with all the rain and ensuing issues in our rooms. Overall it adds to a cooler room, although I’m pouring sweat as I type. i hear drums from behind our compound, and I forgot that i can look out and see the folks who live just beyond the privacy wall, hearing them talk/yell/drum:-)
We’ll get some pictures taken and attached. It is beautiful here and the children look really good.:-)
Last night I had to work through some pity party moments! The power went off at 9:30–we were in bed–and that means the fan shut off and what already was sweltering got more so. my thoughts–only 1 night down, how many more to go?! Glad for Carol’s earlier recommendation to get a wet cloth, which I did, and just moved to various places as I tossed and turned. I hated being negative about being here, esp. so early in the trip, so as I wrestled with that, I remembered the tears little Adilene cried as Mark found her and hugged her yesterday. She and her sister Nounou are the ones whose father was dragged from their home, beaten/hacked/set fire to by men who had an issue with him. These two precious girls are also possible mentally challenged a bit, and definitely reclusive with the rest of the kids. As I though of these kids who long for the attention and love of adults, I thankfully could shift my attitude to one of gratitude for the chance to be here, to love on the kids, to remind them that there are people who care for them. Even today, some of the more aloof children are opening up and coming alive as we interact with them.
We made a trip to the bank to exchange money–some for us while we’re here, and a big chunk of money a friend back home sent with us so that the kids could eat meat for as long as the money lasts. The bank has a “guard” who writes down our passport number before we can go in, then we get to walk past the line of folks and go into a closed door closet/teller which is set up for the “grande caisse”, or big cases:-) Mark just left again with a few boys to buy more bottled water for us. We plan to watch the USA soccer game at 4 here with the kids in their house–they have a little tv that they get to watch on occasion.
As far as the chikungunya virus, it seems to be on the decline. We are deet-ed up and have no bites, praise God! I don’t know how Mark can sleep with his long sleeves and pants, but I guess it’s better than the alternative:-)
I’ll try to post a few pictures once we get something set up. I’m going to sit outside on the balcony with Modeline now and look through the kids’ dictionary we brought.