Tuesday, October 20, 2009


I have been following the treatments of a few patients with Burkitt's lymphoma. Today two of the three kids went to a local hospital to receive their 4th doses of chemotherapy and I tagged along.

This is me with Luc. His dad actually took the photo. There are several remarkable cute things he did today, including:

1. When he saw my friend Suey who runs the program on the dock and he sprinted with his arms wide open towards her, following up with a giant bear hug.

2. He stole everyone's sunglasses and put them on his face.

3. As we drove to the hospital in the Land rover, his dad followed us on his motorbike. Luc turned around in his seat, waved out the window, and yelled, "Papa, Papa," for most of the ride.

4. Before we left, Suey pointed to her cheek and told Luc he hadn't kissed her yet today. He responded with a kiss on the cheek.
Not only is Luc sweet, but his parents are equally lovely. They both made the effort to bring Luc to the hospital and be there for him while he receives his treatment. Non-compliance with treatment is very high in West Africa for many reasons and their faithfulness has been beautiful to see. I've been particularly touched by the gentleness, involvement, and integrity of his father.
As we drove back to the ship today I was reminded how universal human nature is. Parents at home go through the same emotions and stresses when their kids are sick. Please keep little Luc in your prayers.

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