In Septemeber 2008, I traveled 6000 miles to Haiti's Kenscoff mountains. My mission: to care for some of the orphaned and abandoned, the sick, malnourished and premature infants of this beautiful but beleagured Caribbean nation.

Sunday, 29 August 2010

Susan, are you leaving?

She lives at the main house. She is two years old, and has been very sick, all her life, She is verbal enough to express her needs wants, and concerns. I can see the worry playing in her eyes, and I know where this conversation is going.

'Wildanise went away.' That's a fact.
'Yes, darling,', I say smiling.'She went home with her Mummy.' The toddler nods. Wildanise's adoption was complete. She was united with her adoptive family. This was a happy parting.

'Jerry went away.'
'Yes, he went to Kay B.' She pauses, seems satisfied. Kay B is about a mile up the mountain road. The older GLA children live there. Jerry went to join them.

'Ferlanson has gone.'
'Not yet, daring. He is still here. His Mummy and his brother came to get him. They are staying in my house.' She accepts this easily.

'Mitha went away.' Her gaze is steady and deep. Although it cuts me to the core, I am quick to answer, because I have anticipated the question and considered my response, that yes, Mitha did go away.
Mitha: we miss you!

'She can't come back, but she loves you very much.'
'She loves me a lot?' I am not sure what emotion is under the furrowed brow.
Do you doubt it, little one? Are you confused? 'Yes. She loves you a lot. She does. Yes!' I reassure the toddler confidently. When the next question comes, though,it is so unexpected, and it hits so hard, that it knocks the air out of me.'
'Susan, are you going?'

I hope the pause was not too long. I hope it didn't leave any room for doubt to enter, and trouble her heart. 'No darling, Sometimes I will leave for a little while, but I will come back.'

Two weeks ago, Mitha, a very loving, and much loved GLA nanny, passed away,after a brief illness. She was a devout christian lady, simple and uncomplicated. She loved any child we placed in her arms. If they came sickly and malnourished, if they had disabilities or they just needed the constant, patient love of a Mother to get them through the loss of their own family, we placed them with Mitha. She had a heart for the least of the least, and the shunned.

And now she is gone. Two should be too young to comprehend the permanency of death, but the little ones at the baby house have experienced enough loss in their short lives, to know what it means to lose someone forever.

Please pray for the little ones who miss Mitha, and especially for my sickly toddler, who has been here at GLA for two years, and desperately needs a Haitian passport, and a US visa, so that she can go and join her adoptive family. She needs stability, now more than ever, and she needs first world medical care. There are huge obstacles in this child's path. I don't want her to experience any more loss and change here.

Please also pray for the GLA staff. Last year, a young nanny died, and the ladies who work at the main house fell to the ground and convulsed with grief. They have known Mitha for several years, but many of them lost multiple family members when the earthquake hit in January, and they have grieved so hard that they are too emotionally spent for anything except quiet tears.

Lastly, please pray for Mitha's family. She leaves behind a husband, and two children: her little boy is ten years old, and her daughter is sixteen. Mitha's wage paid for their schooling. There is a chance that they will not be able to return to school when the new school year starts.

Our orphanage director estimates that it will cost $1000 USD to pay their school fees and cover other expenses, related to the children's schooling, If you know Mitha, and she has touched your life or your children's lives, please consider contributing to her children's education fund, which has been set up by GLA, in her memory.

1 comment:

Brigitte & lilou said...

sweet Mitha... My daughter used to call her when she arrived in Paris 5 years ago...
Brigitte & Lilou-Midlove