Finding Freedom through Friendship board members have many years of experience of working in Guatemala and being witness to stories of survival from the women and children we assist. Just when we think our work could not be more emotionally compelling, a little boy with a big tumor taught us otherwise. His story is here: http://www.freedomthroughfriendship.org/francisco/
The fabric of care that had to be woven together to blanket this child came together in the same mysterious way that Mayan threads become a beautiful piece of cloth. Two humanitarian organizations needed to combine our resources to provide access to doctors, transportation to Guatemala City, new clothing for Francisco and his father and so, so much more. We will spare our readers the onerous details and instead share photos of a little boy now free from a large tumor.
The future for this Mayan child remains fragile. Tumors the size of basketballs don’t grow for no reason and we still don’t know what that reason was or how it will be treated. For now, Adopt-A-Village (Manuel) and Finding Freedom (Victor) will take a moment to thank our staff for dropping their work responsibilities, getting Francisco what he needed and giving him a chance to be a healthy child. When the time comes, we will continue our collaboration on behalf of this family who is among the poorest of the poor in northern Guatemala.
Waiting for the pathology results will take more time than we have patience for, but meanwhile, Francisco will color pictures rather than hauling firewood. He will eat three meals a day in the hospital instead of occasionally eating in a home where food is scarce. Sleeping in a bed, being in a windproof building and playing with toys are luxuries that he will miss when he is discharged. Having a tumor gave Francisco a chance to be a child, albeit for the saddest of reasons.
With our background in pediatric medical care, we are not optimistic that the physical condition of this sweet boy is going to be so easily resolved. Working in Guatemala teaches us to embrace every good day and expect challenges to await us the following morning. We can only be thankful for the collaboration and caring that allowed a six year old to hold a marker against a piece of paper for the first time ever.
The little joys in life are what make it worth living, and this little one has a lot of living yet to do.