Doris's Procedure on
Doris’ mom died an instant death when Doris was a baby. Doris has no memory of her mother and is unaware that her mother ever died. Her aunt that is raising Doris is whom she calls her mother, and whom she fully believes is her mother. Doris’s … Read more
Doris’ mom died an instant death when Doris was a baby. Doris has no memory of her mother and is unaware that her mother ever died. Her aunt that is raising Doris is whom she calls her mother, and whom she fully believes is her mother. Doris’s real mother is remembered as an aunt she never met. As we sat down with Doris’ grandmother, Cecelia, she told us Doris’ story and the hardships within her family line. “Her mom died of cholera. It took only twenty-four hours to kill her. One day she got sick, and the next day she was gone.” She also shared that there was no special reason they didn't tell Doris and they are starting to ease her into letting her know the full story currently, they just didn't want her to feel abandoned because of her disability.
Cholera is an infectious disease that causes severe watery diarrhea, and if not treated, it can often lead to death within hours. This bacterial illness is contagious and common in poor countries. Cholera takes anywhere between twelve hours and five days for a person to show symptoms after taking in contaminated food or water.
Cecelia continued, “Doris’ real mom was my third born out of four. My fourth born, Doris’ aunt took her in with her husband and raised Doris as their own. Doris has one older sister who knows about their real mom. She keeps it a secret and also accepts her aunt as their new mother. Doris’ father abandoned Doris and her sister after their real mom passed away and was never to be seen again. She still takes his last name, but has never questioned why.” Cecelia went on to tell us that Doris’ mother had the same condition as Doris, but Doris just thinks it was her aunt that had this condition, not her real mother.
Doris has a bone dysplasia and because of this condition, she has abnormal shapes and sizes to the bones in her body, especially in her legs and spine. Doris’ bone dysplasia in her legs results in a condition called bilateral genu valgum, in which the knees angle in and touch each other when the legs are straightened.
“She was born normal and when she first started walking at the age of three, that’s when we noticed she had a disability. We never looked for help because we didn’t think there was anything we could do about it. One day, Doris was walking home from school, and Gladys, one of the nurses here at CURE Malawi, followed her home. Doris walked by Gladys’ home to and from school every day. Gladys came and told our family about CURE and what they could do for Doris. We went to the local clinic and were immediately admitted.”
“Doris’ friends treat her like a normal child and her teachers are very supportive, but we still have greater hopes for Doris. She is a hard-worker, and even though she struggles with school, she never gives up and is always willing to help where there is a need. The biggest challenge she faces is with mobility. It is very hard for her to walk long distances.”
When asking Cecelia about her hopes for Doris’ future, she said, “We hope that Doris gets well, so she is able to support herself in the future. I am a farmer, and Doris’ mom and dad (that are biologically her aunt and uncle) do not work. They have a little garden and they live off of that harvest. We believe Doris can be doing greater things than any of us with the challenges she has faced in life, and I have great hopes for her.”
We asked Cecelia what she would like prayers for and she powerfully said, “We need a breakthrough because Doris was suppose to have her surgery yesterday, but the lab results showed she has malaria, so they put her on medication. We have been feeling down and disappointed she cannot have surgery yet, so we just need God’s direction on what is going to happen next for Doris and to trust in Him!” She continued with a statement that gave us goose bumps, “In everything, God has to be there. When the doctors are working, it’s not by their doing, but God’s wisdom instilled in them in what they are doing. Please pray for God’s grace in Doris’ case and His perfect timing!”
Doris is back at the hospital for clinic and physio! The physio team is having her full weight bear and since she's been non-weight bearing for a long time, she is in a lot of pain. The first thing she said when we got the chance to chat with her was, "Do you have any sweets?" Doris remembered we keep a hidden stash of sweets in our office and was so excited when we gave her a lollipop after her hard work! This girl is only getting stronger and we are so proud! Please keep Doris in your prayers, that her pain lessen on her way to full healing!
Doris has been discharged from the hospital! The physio team has provided Doris a wheelchair for her time away. We plan to see her again on October 29th, she is really excited to be back with her family and show them her healing progress! Please pray for Doris and for her safe trip home!
Today has been an amazing day for Doris. She is up, chatting, and having fun with her friend Gloria! Doris has not yet started walking as the physical therapy team advised that she stays in bed for a couple of days. They did this to allow her time to recover from the pain she has been having after her second surgery on Monday. When we went to the ward, we found Doris and her friend Gloria reading fiction books. Doris then asked our Storyteller Zione, to read and translate one of the books. Doris and Gloria were so attentive and after reading, Zione asked them questions! They both managed to answer correctly. It was so wonderful! Thank you for your persistent prayers for Doris as she is recovering in the hospital!
Doris is having her second surgery today! The doctors will begin straightening her tibia. Doris has taken her medicine to make her sleepy before surgery and slowly falls asleep and then dramatically wakes up in her wheelchair every five minutes, while waiting to be brought back into the operating room. Her grandmother is beside her, falling asleep and dramatically waking up as well, but she didn't take any medicine! We laughed with both of them and joked with Doris' grandmother that she must have taken the medicine too! They are the cutest! Please pray for Doris' second procedure and that God continues to have His hand on her!
Doris is excited about the healing process of her legs! She hasn't been able to get up and around much because the doctors have advised her not to put any weight on her legs for the time being, but she has a super creative imagination! She loves to blow up grocery bags with air, like balloons, tie them and toss it around, not letting it touch the ground! Doris is scheduled to have another surgery sometime this week, the doctors are planning on it being tomorrow, but need to take a look at her x-rays first. Please join us in praying for Doris and her upcoming surgery, and for her creative imagination to continue!
Doris had her first operation yesterday! Dr. Andrew (left) and Dr. Karolina (middle) assisted Dr. James (right) on Doris' procedure. Doris had bilateral blade plates put into both of her legs to change the position of the femur. She will need another procedure next week to begin straightening the tibia. Doris is in a lot of pain, but is very strong! Please keep her in your prayers while she recovers from her first surgery and that she starts feeling better soon!
Meet Doris! She has just come in this week and is scheduled to have surgery on Thursday or Friday. She says her favorite part of the hospital so far is the “Nsima” from the kitchen! We laughed when she told us, along with the other mothers around, as it was so unexpected! Doris dreams of being a nurse when she grows up because white is her favorite color, she likes how it glows in the night. She loves the white outfits nurses wear, and “the cup on their head!” Doris says she isn’t scared for surgery, but would still appreciate prayers! Please pray for Doris and her upcoming surgery!
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