Thursday, February 14, 2013

"No quiero"


Today we made a house call.  The daughter of an 80+ year old woman came by the clinic and begged us to come to her house and talk to her mother who fell last week and broke her hip.  The daughter wants her to have surgery and asked us to talk her into it so that she might walk again instead of having to be moved from bed to courtyard to bathroom via a tarp (she has no wheelchair or other mode of moving).  Dr. Ogden (third picture) got down on his knee beside her bed, caringly took her hand and gently explained the options to her, encouraged her to think about her quality of life and her family and then asked her what she wanted.  After hearing Dr, Ogden's beautiful words and explaining to him that she didn't feel strong enough (even after he explained how she could get stronger), he asked her what she wanted and she said "no quiero".  It was a very emotional discussion for us and her family that was made even more touching when the interpreter Luis (our wonderful guide and transportation coordinator) lovingly ran his hands through her hair as he told her how much everyone cared.  Student doctor Casey Shelley (in the middle picture) and all of us learned a lot.  We learned about family (many people drove up and asked about her while we were there and the little house had probably 5 people who all slept in the same room), about faith (she explained that she just wanted a miracle), about respecting the patients' wishes, and about how the people here put first things first.  We were humbled.

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