Herynlyn on the dock

Her name is Herynlyn. Her mom looks younger than my youngest sister, and she herself is a toddler. She wandered into a cooking fire and her bottom lip is crookedly stretched tightly to her chin. She doesn’t know the difference between herself and other little girls yet, but she will in a few years if something isn’t fixed.

Otiniela with Tanya, one of our crew members

Her name is Otiniela. She’s independent, headstrong, and practices her English with the nurses. She’s officially a teenager at 13, but her womanly curves will never be allowed to develop. She  was carrying a pot of boiling water and it tipped over onto herself. Her chest is scarred, and these scars are tight; Her breasts will not be able to develop without surgical intervention.

Serge with Noel, one of our ward nurses

His name is Serge. He’s in his mid 20’s. He was working as a security guard and someone didn’t like that. They wanted the motorcycle he was securing. They dumped acid over him in a desperate act of hate and greed. Serge’s face, arms, and torso are ridged and rippled with the massive scars left behind from the burns. The skin has tightened pulling his eyelid downward, too far downward to ever blink that eye.

His name is Orlando (not pictured). He is younger than I am, just at the age that he’d probably be going to university, or looking for a wife. His face, arms, and torso are severely burned and the healed contractures have formed his elbows into webbed wings. His house went up in flames, and while he could’ve gotten out, there was a child inside for whom he returned to rescue.

Our patients are the reason we are here.
Every sacrifice,
every frustration,
every new experience,
every time we miss important events at home,
every time I worry about my stagnant savings account,
every goodbye to crew members that I really started to be fond of…
It’s all because of these precious humans.

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