sexta-feira, 15 de janeiro de 2010

2 Sweet Girls

It was a Sunday afternoon…. very few times I had a free Sunday to relax.... it´s the way it was.... no one else to do our job.... we had to be ready when ever is was necessary...
I was called by radio to go to the hospital with the information that there where some wounded by gun shots …. It was common on Sundays... Too many Kalashnikovs…. The military would get drunk and for any stupid reasons would use it.....
When I arrived to the hospital, the local nurses told me that there were children involved !! Shit !! What ever it is ...its very bad already... My heart starts beating faster....before I get to the room where they were …
And there they were, 2 sweet little girls ….very scared, screaming in pain....a lot of blood everywhere ….
Noemie, is 10 years old, she was shot in the upper part of her arm, causing a very extensive wound, and fracture of the bone (umerus)...






Tuliza, is 4 years old, she was shot in her foot, causing an explosion of many of the bones of her foot, with a huge hole that you could see right through it ….











Why??? How is it possible that one can do this to these sweet little girls? How can somebody be so cruel ?
Noemie and Tuliza are sisters, their mother works in one local bar in town, and this 2 drunk military, from the Congolese army, started arguing with each other where they were, and decided to use their guns to solve whatever issues they had....But for some reason the only ones who took the bullets were this 2 innocent girls... Life is just not fair for some...
The Kalashnikovs are high energy guns, once the bullets enter the body they start spinning on random directions and cause unbelievable destruction of the tissues of the human body...I will spare you from seeing the pictures of the wounds but believe me....they are really impressive....
We had to go with one after the other to the operation room, they lost a lot of blood, manage to go through the surgery with no big complications. Tuliza went first, very scared not wanting to let go of her mother that stood by her side until she was under anesthesia, it was a very complicated case, with no X-ray, its difficult to know exactly how bad are the fractures of the bones of the foot.... Cleaning , disinfecting, removing the dead and dirty tissue, and trying to immobilize the foot in a position that the fracture would consolidate in a way that she could use that foot again to be able to walk....she is 4 !!! Noemie went afterwards, the hole that she had was as big as her skinny arm, with total fracture of the bone of the arm, with something like 10 cms of the bone missing that explode way from the warm....Horrible scenario, even for somebody that already saw a lot . She had no destruction of the main arteries or nerves, meaning that she could probably use the arm in the future if everything went well ! But can u use the arm if you have the upper part of the bone of the arm missing? I cant answer this question, or we couldn't answer this question with the means that we had... She cant hold her arm, despite being able to use her hand... Maybe one day in an handicapped program somebody will be able to improve her mobility one day...Always think positive !! We do what we can, step by step...but sometimes is not enough...



For many days that had to stay in the hospital, as for this kind of injury, they needed to go, many times to the operation room for surgery, to change the dressing, cleaning the wound, as the biggest killers for these type of patients are the infections that are very common, so all the care was necessary to avoid that....and yes we did avoid the infections for these 2 sweet girls...
Everyday I was with them, not speaking their language but communicating somehow ….I played with them many times and got famous among these kids and others for giving them balloons made of plastic gloves! I was really happy to still have a way to make them smile...
Noemie, was wise and quiet, never saw her sad or complaining, she had this beautiful shy smile, with deep, big, very black eyes....Pure, humble and genuine... The most amazing thing about children in general is the fact that they are so pure and innocent, but these African kids take that idea to the maximum ... They are so full of life and desire to live....
Tuliza as you can see is a bit chubby...and one day she was very grumpy, trying to beat her mother and her sister... I was surprised, it was not normal... I was trying to ask her mother with few words and signs, about what was going on!! Her mother pointed to the sign your you had written in French and Swahili “ No eating or drinking as its surgery day”... it was very difficult to explain the patients that they could not eat or drink before surgery for the safety of anesthesia, and this mother many times couldn't resist the temptation of giving food to her kids even when I explained many times, with the locals help to translate those rules, causing us to postpone and delay the treatment of those kids…..... And then I understood :) !! Ahhhh !! Tuliza was not in a bad mood because she had to go to the operation room that day, because she did it many times before and she could go with me on my lap very calm and accepting her difficult treatment very well......She was beating every body because she was hungry !!! And for that I couldn't do anything about it !! Or make her smile !!
And that was the only moment when I ever saw Tuliza without her beautiful smile, that gave me a lesson for life! Her smile was naughty, full of energy, telling how much she loved life even when she was in a very complicated situation ... She made me promise myself, that I would never be sad again! It´s unreal of course …. but how can we be sad? For what reasons can we be sad? When this 4 year old girl that was shot in her foot by a Kalashnikov of a drunk military for no reason, who will be lucky if she will ever walk normally again....and still has that smile !! How can we have the right to be sad ???? I will always “use” her to get my smile back whenever I will be sad....
I did my best to help them in their treatment but I can honestly tell you that they “gave” me much more than I “gave” them....  For me it´s priceless this lesson of life ….
I will never be able to thank them, but with these simple words, I am able to dedicate them and many other kids that suffer because of that stupid war, this story...



Thank you Noemie and Tuliza I will love you forever !












1 comentário:

  1. Impressionante ! Também me vou tentar lembrar da Tuliza nos maus momentos.... e nos bons também : ) Não me vou esquecer destas meninas. Obrigada Gu. MJoao Carona

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