I hate death. I hate even more not being there when it happens. Today Bele, a child who came in last fall completely wasted and close to death then but who recovered and was doing very well, died. I followed him, his sister and mother on a regular basis. We saw them often; we even visited their village as you can see in the picture. This was in December, a few months after starting treatment.
I sat with his dad that day in December as he talked about how Bele had left dead and come back alive. He had heard reports that Bele had passed away, then found out that he was still alive. I saw the joy in his eyes as he talked of his son who was now doing well. There was hope where they had been none before. It was so special to have seen his improvement and healing.
Bele was a sweet kid. He didn't talk a lot but he had a precious smile. The chubbier he got, the cuter he got. I tried to help with that in anyway I could by given candy and chocolate as much as possible. :) He would run up and hug me when he saw me. His face would light up. So would mine. He was my buddy.
Unfortunately the illness he has had since birth was too much for him. He had suffered too long before treatment. The illness had taken its toll and shut down his kidneys. There was nothing that could be done.
Thankfully, I skyped with him two days ago. Jason had told me he was not doing well and I just wanted to see him again. He sat in front of the computer breathing heavily. He smiled and made a little laugh when I told him I'd be bringing him candy and chocolate for him when I got back. Oh how I wish I could have given him his candy.
Death just stinks. Especially in a child. I thought about waiting to write this post later, once I had composed myself a bit. But this is a part of the job. The terrible part. The part that breaks your heart. And actually physically hurts. What makes it worse is that we do this again and again. Death after death of little children, who if they were in a different country would probably not have died. The families aren't to cry over this loss. They move on. That makes me mad. Not at the culture, but just that so many children can die unnecessarily and the rest of the world doesn't stand up to do something about it. This should not be acceptable.