Noticing Maime was awake, I sat by her bed in hopes that I might obtain a set of vital signs. You never want to wake a sleeping baby so I needed to sneak in during my moment of opportunity.
Maime is a beautiful almost 2 month old baby. She had surgery last week to repair a meningocele. As i sat by her bed, listening to her small lungs, checking her rapidly beating pulse, I began to speak with her parents.
They are lovely people. And they were so happy.
Her father told me Maime's story. I will paraphrase his words.
My wife and I we have not been able to eat for a whole month. I have been so worried and have been crying every night.
When the baby was born I took her to the JFK hospital because I was told that is the only place where the babies problem can be fixed. But they told me the operation would cost 5,000 dollars. I did not have that money. I went home and I cried and cried. I wanted to help my baby but I could not. I was told JFK was the only place she could have the operation.
The people were ashamed of her. Most people wash their babies outside but we had to wash her inside in the dark so no one would see her. My wife she was very sad. I was very sad. I could not stop crying every night.
When I was out at work someone told my about Mercy Ships. I decided I would bring the child to the ship. When I brought the child to the ship they did the operation and I am so happy. I am so thankful for the Mercy Ship. I am going to have a big party when I take the child home.
The father was beaming the throughout the entire telling of the story. He was so grateful that we could help his baby. His joy almost made me cry at the bedside.
It was so nice to see a father loving his baby. I have heard of other father's in the same position try to get rid of the baby.
I don't have children so I can't pretend to know what it feels like to not be able to help your child. Especially when you know they could be helped if you had better resources. But I imagine it to be one of the most helpless feelings in the world.
The parents asked if I would take their photos. They were so proud of their baby.
more photos of maime here