Nuevo days to go!
Девять дней, чтобы идти, as they say in Katie's country.
So, it's no secret that children in Katie's country in the orphanages have some medical issues. And some are just basic care issues that can be rectified with a little basic care. The kind of care that we take for granted. Like, seriously for granted.
Amy, an amazing mom who is a single mother with five sons, four of them with Down syndrome and three of whom are adopted, posted here about meeting her newest son, Liam. As I read her post, one part really stuck out to me:
I didn't expect his teeth to be so covered in plaque. Both Caleb and Elijah's teeth were beautiful, so I didn't have any reason to think that Liam's would be any different. But they were awful and the smell that came from his mouth was horrid. :( Mental note to myself: first thing when I return to the US, make a dentist appointment for Liam. A sad reminder of the neglect he has endured.
This is COMPLETELY unnecessary. And unimaginable to me. We so take for granted the simple things we have available to us, and for our children. I can honestly say that I have not ever really given much thought to brushing our teeth, or brushing the boys teeth. You have teeth, you brush them. End of story. Not so much for Katie and other kids like her.
I am a do-er. I'm a fixer. And I am not afraid to ask for help. So I have. And, in typical fashion, my friends have started to really come through. While I realize that I cannot change the fate of the children who will be left behind at Katie's orphanage, I can do my best to help them, and to help the people who are there caring for them to take better care of them. There is no reason that I can fathom that these children cannot brush their teeth, unless it is because they do not have the proper tools. That? That I can do. That I can help to fix.
The kids at Katie's orphanage will be receiving 54 toothbrushes and tubes of toothpaste, courtesy of Dr. Jess Sinquefield at Sinquefield Family Dentistry. How did we get these donated? I asked. I called Dr. Sinquefield's brother and asked if it would be possible. Dr. Sinquefield's brother had zero hesitation. None. He had a lot of questions, which I was more than happy to answer. He was just as shocked as I was that such serious tooth decay and dental issues affected these children at such a young age. He had no idea. And neither did I.
Three days later?
I had a box with all of these goodies on my desk at work.
I know I likely sound much like a broken record, but the generosity that people have shown to us during this process is something that we will never, ever forget. And we will talk about with our children, over and over. I can only hope that we will teach our children - through our words and our actions - to be as generous as the people around us. And if I call in every single favor I may have out there, it will be worth every single second.
So, though it is not enough, thank you Chase, and thank you Dr. Sinquefield. Thank you for being part of this process, and thank you for helping us to leave Katie's friends and caregivers with a gift that can make a big difference to the children we will leave behind.