This is a picture of me with Jose and his mother. Jose is 9 years old and he has epilepsy. His story is a sad one...but he wouldn't know it. I met him and his mother last Thursday at the medical brigade in Uracco. As I sat with them and talked to his mother, I found out that his father left them when Jose was only 6 months old. They live about 6 hours from any relatives, and I think that they like it that way.
They have lived in Uracco for a year, but I don't think that they get out much because of Jose's condition. It was a really BIG step for his mother to bring him to the brigade and bring him out into the public.
We had chicken and rice that day for the patients and I was able to bring them some food and sit with them for a while. I held Jose while his mother ate her lunch, and I wondered how it would feel to carry him around everyday like she does. I mean, I held him for about 30 minutes...she holds him all day long.
We are going to try and help them. Jose was able to take some medicine while he was at the brigade...which is the first time in his whole life that he has received medication for his epilepsy. I want to go see them this week and bring some clothes and diapers for him. I want to get to know his mother.
This is really why we are here. To break the chains of oppression that are strangling the people of this community. To be a light in the darkness and to offer comfort to those who are in need. This picture, although bittersweet, will be carried around in my mind's eye forevermore.
I think about his mom, and wonder if she ever feels like the woman at the well. That Samaritan woman was an outcast in her community...nevermind the reason. I wonder how strong she must be to care for Jose on her own. She was so quick to smile...and I think I am still processing all of the things I learned from her by sharing a few minutes of her life.