Development writing 2 15M
15 February 2018
Haiti: Trip that changed my life
Travel is all about making decisions, from planning our trip to making a last- second change in a foreign country or city you are in complete control of your journey. In June 2012, I nervously set out for one of the most transformative trips of my life. That summer, I spent a month in Haiti with my church’s mission team. I was the youngest person on the trip and of course my parent was with me. Learned more about world and myself than I could have learned in month. My eyes were opened to poverty, hunger, homelessness and more global problems than I ever could have imagined from the comfort of my home. Afterward, I was able to relocate my team members, and we were off to leogane, our home base. We briefly stay there with Jen Louis, the pastor my church had partnered with. We visited wings of refuge, the children home he ran, and met all the beautiful babies who were either orphans or simply in need of a better home. Our next stop was petionville. Here, we had the honor of attending, speaking at and participating in youth camp that was hosted by pastor William and his wife, whom we called pas and Momma pas. I can truly say that despite the difficult conditions compared to the United States, that was the best month of my life. Two years after the catastrophic 7.0 magnitude earthquake, the damages were still evident. One story that broke my heart was from a young family at the camp, their baby died from the earthquake, and the wife lost leg after buried under the rubble. However, the mother and father did not let that rock their faith. There they were, walking up and down the grassy common area following their infant son. He was their miracle child after their first baby was taken from them so quickly. Although we were there to minister to the Haitians, I think is safe that they minister to us. many of the families on the trip looked forward to this event ear because they knew they would be fed and housed. Too often, Haitian go out those basic necessities because cannot afford them. Haiti changed how I see gratitude, as we toured the Notre dame des victories orphanage in port au prince I witnessed kids who were beyond grateful and proud to be sleeping on crates, without pillows or even in broken beds, walking around with dirty cloths I was changed. I had to ponder to myself sure I’m grateful for my current bed and pillows, but would I be as grateful with no pillow or to sleep on a crate? How lucky are we to have simple luxuries like pillows to lay our heads on at night? The youth were served with shoes, clothing, school uniforms, backpacks and school supplies. Many of them were so excited for the underwear as they weren’t even wearing any. To see the children so happy for the ability to pick out and try on shoes made us all stand in awe. The children sang to us and the Nun thanked us for being there with her, it was a day we will never forget, the simple things that mean so much.
This was a trip I will never forget, it was an eye-opening experience, we have brothers and sisters all over the world that need us. May we NEVER take for granted our many blessings we have in the U.S. I learned a lot about myself, the power of belief and going for it. I also gained a different perspective and appreciation for the life we live here in the U.S. and explored another culture. This past years was the closest I’ve ever actually lived in my faith, and that makes me sad. I’ve gone to great lengths to serve but I knew at so many moments during this trip, that I had so much work to do and that God was moving me to do it. If I can be transparent for even a moment, it’s been a very tough year for me personally, I don’t even think I can put it all into words in just one post. There were days that I wanted to quit, days when I was so low I thought it couldn’t get worse and it did. However, what this mission trip quickly made me realize is that I never, ever have it as bad as someone else. Haiti was the poorest country my eyes have ever seen, but while I was there, my heart had never felt so rich. If you want to be changed, I challenge you, whether you can go on a mission trip or not, to start serving. Volunteer your time, donate, or even just quit complaining because trust me when I tell you, you have so much to be thankful for!