This is Rashel.
On thursday Rashel's little baby brother of 1 year, Yandel, was very sick with a fever and vomiting and his parents took him to the hospital in town. (The public hospital if free for people who do not have insurance or can't afford care in a clinic. Unfortunately, the free price directly correlates to the quality of care.) The doctor gave him a shot and a prescription (without running any tests on him) and sent him home as it seemed his condition had improved. Several hours later he was still running a high fever and vomiting so his parents decided to take him back to the doctor. Again, the doctor gave him a shot (again, without running any tests) and sent him home. Several hours later he began sweating and trembling and passed out. Yandel never regained consciousness.
On friday afternoon we went to their house to visit. As is typical here when someone dies, the whole community was there sitting silently. The men were sitting out under a tree and when I went to give my condolences to the father, he hugged me with a longing for comfort but as if his body had no strength anymore. I can't describe to you the horrible look of pain in his eyes. It broke my heart and brought me to tears immediately.
Just then, Rashel came running out of the house, ("Kati!!!") so excited to see us. She ran to me and gave me a hug and then hugged Alberto. As Alberto held her she said, "Yandel died" so matter of factly as if she knew it was a big deal but really didn't understand the weight of it. Again I was brought to tears.
We entered the little shack and it was filled with women sitting and whispering quietly. The mother was standing huddling over the tiniest casket that I had ever seen. When she saw me she cried out my name in anguish and hugged me as if she would never let go, but again as if she couldn't help but let go. Again I can't even describe to you the pain in her eyes.
I sat and cried with her for a while and then went outside to hold Rashel. She was her normal joyful self and I played with her quietly, relishing in the sound of her laughter amongst all the crying. I held her as she ate her lunch and told me about her new cats and showed me her artwork hanging on the wall. And my heart was breaking the whole time.
I don't know how this family will come out of this tragedy. They are such wonderful, caring parents. I don't know how to tell them that everything will be ok and that God never makes mistakes. I pray that God will slowly heal them and draw them to Himself. Please pray for Rashel and her family.