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Friday, February 10, 2017

Haiti Day 4

I woke up early to see the sunrise. It was so beautiful. When I was doing my bible study, God spoke to me. I was wondering what classes I should take in school that way I can get an early start for college. He said he will reveal his plan in his timing. I also learned that I need to move towards God's plan and if he closes doors I will stop. If he opens doors, I will go. We went to church and it was pretty long. We saw our sponsor kids and they were doing well. The church this year  had fans and they were so awesome. I didn't sweat nearly as much as I did in the years before. After church, we went to the beach. We went to a different place that was nicer than the other place we went to last year. We went over to a small island and we got some good pictures. Scott got stung by a jellyfish but he feels totally fine. This is such a God thing because Scott was totally fine after he got stung.  the beach, I played basketball with some kids at the children's home. It was the Americans versus the Haitians. The Americans won. After that, we ate dinner and then had devotions. Devotions took forever and they were in a room and not on the roof. After devotions, my family talked with Emmanuel. Emmanuel is such an awesome guy. He met Belle for the first time in person and he was so excited. I love hanging out with him. After that I talked with some of the guys on the trip. They are so funny so I always have a good time with them. I go to mobile clinic tomorrow and it will be my first time in an "actual clinic" this trip. I am so excited to do something medical because God may speak to me when I am doing something related to medicine. I can't wait till tomorrow. 

Thursday, February 9, 2017


So this is the reason I come to Haiti!  Clinics- using my God given skills to help people. But especially mobile clinics.  We pack up a bin of meds and take off in the back of a truck for hours to see a bunch of patients who can't come to the main clinic.  I scored big time going to the two most beautiful places on mobile this week.  Vieux Cayes is up in the mountains on dirt roads with big rock drop offs.  We get to work in an open air school with a cool breeze blowing and the mountains in the background.  I could set up shop here permanently!  We saw a good 75 patients between Luke, a GI doc from Indy, and I and still had time to come back to the main clinic to see 15 patients to catch them up.  Not too many sick kids but fun to hand out toys and the teens got to come.  Belle and Luke were with me taking patients around and praying for them!  It is great to work together.  I love seeing them interacting with the Haitians and loving on them.  We had one girl who is seen every year that is an Albino.  She gets sunburned and then gets bad sores.  We put her on some antibiotics and prayed her up but the sores on her arms looked excruciating!  She just had the biggest smile and was so thankful for everything.
Then today I got to go to Lazille.  They haven't seen missionaries for 4 years and I was lucky enough to be on the team.  We started at 5am and  it took us 3 hours to get there, and at least half of that was off roading!!!!  We got to ford the river three times- I'm talking up to the top of the tires and totally sideways up the hill!  The roads were horribly awesome, dirt, ruts, rocks- my Jeep would have been sweet!  So we saw almost 200 patients between Alan an ER doc and I.  Mostly healthy people but a few really sick ones.  We totally ran out of meds and patient sheets and pill bags.  We were using gloves to hand out pills in and some unconventional meds for different ailments!  They all got prayed up and were so thankful.  I couldn't turn the kids away.  I think there were at least 10 kids I saw after we said no more! They are just so cute and just want someone to look at them.  It breaks my heart to think they have nobody within 3 hours to see them for any urgent needs.  These kids just die when something bad happens!  My last patient said he had something on his tongue.  When he stuck it out, I said he bit it didn't he?  He had bit all the way through the middle of his tongue and there was a flap hanging there.  It was healing fine already so we just gave him some Tylenol and vitamins.  The day started with the pastor making us some Haitian coffee and hot cocoa.  The cocoa was pretty spectacular as was the bread.  And the day ended with chicken and rice and plantains and cole slaw and beet salad.  This was probably all of their food for the week and they gave it to us for coming.  Talk about humbling.  Well I already started my cipro antibiotics because we had to eat it or it would have been rude!  Side note, it was dark this morning and a 100 pound pig ran out in front of our truck and we slammed it!  Bacon anyone?
Thanks to all of the patients who donated little toys and matchbox cars!  I gave most of them out on mobile clinics along with some amazon toys I got and suckers!  It's amazing how quickly a sucker will make a kid stop crying and start to like you!  I would never do that at home but this is Haiti!
There is a surgeon here, Dr. King,  doing hernia surgeries on people and changing their lives.  One of my patients moms is here.  Two of our good friends.  Two of Alyssa's good friends.  3 ER docs, 2 GI docs, a neonatal NP, a bunch of nurses and even more "non" medical people. We all work together as one team just like the body of Christ is supposed to!  3 of the team had to go home today due to sicknesses in their families and I just got word that one of my office staff just lost a baby. (Please pray for her) Satan is trying to discourage us and get in the way of our walk and our testimony.  But we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him and are called according to His purpose.  Please pray for us and those above that we can continue being about HIS PURPOSE!!
Bon Nuit!!  Good Night


           Wow!!!!!! I can't believe I'm in Haiti! This morning we built a house for the Burtts sponsor family. Who knew it could be that hard of work!!! We had to carry buckets of rock up a hill and then cement blocks as well. I loved how refreshing it was later to see our sponsor family and see how much God has done for and with them. It is so much easier to see the Lord here when my eyes are opened to this different lifestyle. 
          The next day, Another house!!!!!!! Today it was for the Tillmans sponsor family though. The only thing we did was sift in the sun, then get a drink, then sift some more, then maybe play with the kids!!!! The kids were so helpful and they all wanted to contribute to the house somehow. Later we went to the children's home. All of the girls and boys were sooo happy even though they didn't have much. The girls put on a dance and they sang for us all of our songs in English. You could easily see and feel how much they love the Lord. 
           I can't believe we are almost halfway through the week!!!!! Everything has gone by so fast. We went to church this morning and all the families were worshipping just like we would. The songs were pretty long though, I felt as if they just sang the chorus over and over again!!!!! Ha Ha! Our sponsor kids Federlin and Federlyn and their family sat with us. I love how much Federlin liked Alyssa and she fell asleep on her in service!!! The Lord has worked in amazing ways throughout the week and I can't wait to see how much more he will do.                    
                                                   ~Belle (the 1st timer)

Tuesday, February 7, 2017


Still can't believe I'm actually here in Haiti (for my fifth year!!!) It's been an amazing start to the trip, and I can't wait to see how God continues to work this week!! The first day in Haiti(My birthday)could not have been better!! We got so much accomplished at house building for the Burtt's sponsor kids! Still can't feel my biceps hahaha! We could even see the ocean from the mountain the worksite was on!!
The best part of the day was seeing our sponsor kids!! After a womens' meeting, I had been walking back to the dorms when Federlyn and Federline came running to meet me! They jumped on me and I bent over hugging them for as long as I could. I couldn't help but shed a few tears. (The Lord must know how much I love hugs!!) I couldn't believe their excitement and how easily they recognized me!!
Later, the rest of the fam and Riley and I got to visit their home!! It was so special giving them all their gifts! We gave them medicine, toys, protein bars, and drew with chalk on the outside of their home. All of us wrote our names, and I wrote We Love You! I'm so thankful Riley got to come with us to see them! She fit right in and bonded with Francesca, one of our twins' older sisters! (Riley has been amazing and humbly serving and loving the Haitians in such a beautiful way. I love her.)
Each year the goodbyes become longer and sweeter even if we will see them later in the week.

On Saturday, my favorite moment was at the Children's home. The kids sang 10,000 Reasons (one of my favorites) and another worship song. Maddymoan and Riley and I let the tears flow. It was like God was in the room. Their stunning voices and enthusiasm were breathtaking, and I couldn't help but thank the Lord for the Haitians.

Sundays are always one of my favorite parts! Federlyn sat on my lap the entire 3 hours of church!! Half the time she fell asleep on my shoulder :) . I had to hold back tears. It was overwhelming holding my sweet sister and hearing the Haitians singing at the top of their lungs to our Savior.
The other half she kept flipping through the pages of my little blue bible. <3
Her sister, Natalie, was sitting next to me and had her Haitian Creole Bible in her lap. I asked her if I could see it and turned to my all time favorite passage, Ephesians 3:14-21. She read it and the chapters around and creased half the page so she could remember it. Heart full.

Thank you for all the prayers!! Please continue to pray that God will do far more abundantly than all that I could ask or think!! We have such a loving Father.                                             ~ALYSSA

Sunday, February 5, 2017


So I learned a lesson today- if you get to a job site and the workers aren't there but 100 Haitian children are, don't get out of the truck!  We showed up at the Tillman's house today that they are building for their sponsor child.  It was down by the river in town where I had never been which was cool.  The river right now consists of a huge gorge with trickling water down the center meandering about.  Enough to bathe and wash clothes in and drink from, but just barely.   When the hurricane came through it nearly crested the banks and would have wiped out the surrounding houses.  This has happened twice in the last 20 years where the rains were so bad that the water tumbling down the mountain actually washed out the bridge going over the road!  Anyway, the workers weren't at this site yet and there were no tools for us to work, so we were suddenly expected to entertain 100 children.   They were playing soccer with a flat ball using two stones as the goals that you had to hit.  Luckily I had brought some suckers and bubbles and Scott brought a beach ball that we played with for 20 minutes until the workers arrived.  The kids swarmed us and wanted to take everything from our bags and kept saying, "you give me one dollar".   These are the first words their parents teach them in English other than "you you" when they want you attention.  We finally got to work but quickly found out that they dumped the sand partly where the house was supposed to go!  Nothing like moving material twice!  We mostly sifted sand and shoveled sand out of the way all morning.  At one point a boy about 12 wanted to help and he was shoveling sand into my sifter which is a 2x4 rectangular box with a metal grate on the bottom.  As i was shaking the sand to sift out the larger rocks and then tossing them to the side, he would shovel another load into my sifter.  I started going faster and so did he until it became a contest to see who could last longer!  I tried this last year with one of the workers and he smoked me.  So I thought I can surely beat a 12 year old!  And you will be happy to know that I put him to shame.  Ask Alyssa, I think she was pretty impressed with her dad.  I am very sore, but it was a great two days of workouts!
We did a vocational fair today as well for seventh and eighth graders at the Lifeline school.  A bunch of us talked about what we do at our jobs and then the kids got to ask us questions.  Being the only doctor, I got most of the questions!  One girl asked me to convince her why she needed to study hard and what wisdom I had about studying hard.  After explaining to her that she needed to read a ton and ask questions of those wise adults around her and learn from them so she can get a good education and have the chance to go to college, she said she was 85 percent convinced! After some other questions and with time almost up, I took the microphone back and said "I have one more thing that will get
 you the extra 15 percent.  God tells us that whatever we do, we should do it as if working for the Lord, whether chores or jobs or even school.  She smiled and said ok now I am 100 percent!
Then we got to go to the orphanage here on campus to see the children living there and play with them.  They sang a couple songs and did 2 interpretive dances that were just amazing.  Riley and Maddy and Alyssa were all crying listening to them.  We did a water balloon toss which was awesome.  They had never done that before!  Brilliant thinking by one of our teammates. Then we just played and loved on them.  Again the kids were awesome relating to these teens and young ones.
I feel like a veteran for sure now.  When one of the three main leaders aren't around, people look to me for guidance.  I had to come up with a song and lead us at the children's home (Amazing Grace) and then lead the water balloon toss.  I felt like i was at camp!!  Then I took a team of about 20 out into the community to see the city and go down to the ocean.  We had a fun time taking pictures and interacting with the Haitian people of Grand Goave.
Have I mentioned I love coming here?  The team consists of 48 people. Maybe 15 newbies and a lot of old timers.  I don't see many of these people for a whole year, but when we get here we are like best friends and pick up right where we left off from last year.  Everyone works so well together and it is just a joy to serve alongside such wonderful people.  I am truly thankful for this opportunity and would invite any of you all to come along! Be careful though, because Charlotte and Denise brought Thomas and Scott and are hooked, have sponsor children, and are building them houses! 

One more thing... one of my favorite parts from yesterday. I told you we had water balloons for a water balloon toss with the kids at the children's home. They put me on charge which is never a good idea. But I have a loud voice (sorry Jaime) and I am kind of fun!  So I had each Haitian kid pick an American to be their partner. Then we tossed. It was hilarious. Pics to follow later. 
After the toss we had balloons left over. I brought them to the middle of the field and started talking. We had a translator there helping us and if you have ever had to translate something you know how long it takes and how you stop your sentences in the right place to make it dramatic! Well most of the team knows me well enough to see what was coming and I could see them retreating to the back. When I announced to the Haitian kids that now they needed to take the remaining water balloons and throw them at the Americans, the squeals and screams were hilarious!!  What a great memory!  You will have to ask your kids about it. Riley and her partner were one of the two winners of the toss!!  And then her partner chased her to throw the next balloon at her!!  That's gratitude and an instant bond!!