When we have the opportunity to help anyone, we should do it. -Galatians 6:10a (NCV)

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I Said No

Yesterday I spent the day organizing and rearranging items in the clinic while a team from Indiana did construction work on the camp. There were several Haitians in and out of the clinic for dressing changes, stitches and various requests. Usual day.

Until Manuela walked in. Manuela is 17 and has a 9 month old baby boy. She recently went back to high school and her mom is watching the baby while she is in school. Manuela was in the first Mother/Infant nutrition class I taught in Peredo. Then, the baby was a newborn and Manuela was a hard-headed first time mother who did NOT buy into the "breast-feeding is best" motto. The other moms did a great job encouraging her. Boy did this girl try my patience.

Everytime I see Manuela she is alone or hanging out with friends. Never once have I seen her with her son. Never.

She comes around the clinic now and then and asks for formula, baby bottles, baby clothes, money.

Yesterday was one of those days.

But yesterday she asked for formula, baby bottles, clothes, AND money.

And she needed them quick because her boyfriend was waiting for her outside.

I stood there. Looking at this 17 yr old mother.

I didn't lecture her. I didn't roll my eyes-even though I BADLY wanted to.

I just said, "No."

It came out so easy but, last night, when I was laying in bed, I was running it through my mind again and again.

Did I do the right thing? I came here to help. Churches and individuals support me to help the Haitian people.

But yesterday I said no.

Somehow I think that helped more than a baby bottle or clothes.

But it doesn't feel as good.


Sandy said...

Hi Ginny,
Sometimes the right answer is no.
I know it was a hard decision for you. Thank you for posting the pictures of Miss Odessa she is too
cute and I think she knows it. HA HA
Hurry home .
God Bless

ljkeiper said...

I just read an article similar to your experience.... and yes, sometimes helping hurts. You're doing a great job, Ginny!

Patti Keaton said...

Hi Ginny,

Just got back in states and have your blog as my favorites. I want to encourage you too with, yes it's ok to say no. I am sure since the words came very calmly that it was a God thing! Please be assured you are in God hands and are doing the right thing even though you feel alone. I feel in love with you and Odessa the moment I saw you both. I did not tell you so, but please know you hold a special place in my heart! The trip to Haiti has opened my eyes to mission work and especially to the work "you" do! God Bless and please don't hesitate to let me know "anything" I can do for you. My cell number is 317-440-3543. Love ya much, Patti Keaton p.s. Did you get my note with balloons and hair bands?

Anonymous said...

Hi Ginny! Odessa is darling. I think you were right to say no and I feel I would have done the same. Sometimes girls are controlled by boyfriends...even husbands. If you never see her with her child I would ? he motives for the money usage...do you ever check on the welfare of the baby?
Hugs and blessings! Deb