Tom and Cindy, the invaluable nurse on the team, flying home;
thanks to the generous Haitian pilot Jorge Paulhiac who let them hitch a ride.
Tom, Coffeedoc, is home! It was a long haul home, but he made it safe and sound. Chris, Buddybug, is gone....off to Rome to study for the semester.
In less than 24 hours we've had incoming and outgoing bags and packs and airport runs in both directions. A revolving door to this house this week.
The good part is that Tom is back and we are all so very glad! And we were all glad to have had one last family dinner together last night, and for Tom to be able to see Chris a bit more before he left.
Was it hectic?
Was it worth it?
But of course!
So, to follow this new adventure in Buddybug's life, go here.
He's gonna post from Rome, often enough to keep us all happy. Or so we can live vicariously, or virtually, and follow the fun, frustrations, faith, liturgy, beauty, silliness, art, food and adventures of a semester in Rome.
That's the plan at any rate.
As for Tom....I think he has some decompressing to do. I think it was a great trip, seems like it was a good team to work with and much good work was done. And I know for him it's very satisfying and rewarding to be able to go and do all this. He loves doing it...on so many levels.
There were many folks to help unfortunately, due to the quake. But happily enough, many docs and teams working hard throughout the country. Tom enjoyed working with other docs from all over, and was glad to be able to! Docs and teams might pop in, lend a hand and move on. Other areas would send patients over to Cayes Jacmel, knowing Tom and their team would fix them up. It was a nonpolitical effort of focusing on what needed to be done by all; the Canadian military did an outstanding job securing the area, getting runway lights (by the time Tom left) and opening the road back up to Port au Prince. So it was a good trip.
But, it's never easy either.
I forgot...when he comes back from Haiti, there is always some re-entry decompressing and sorting out to do for him. For anyone I expect. It is exhausting as well as exhilarating, on all levels.
Evening at the Hands and Feet Children's Village project.
That's the nature of this sort of thing. It happens whenever you (ok, I) travel outside of your sheltered, carefully crafted and whittled world - you/I have to recalibrate, take in all the sights sensations sounds smells, the spears that pierce your heart. And then you/I have to sort of heal it up. For yourself/myself. That is not to say that you make it all disappear. It can't.
But... this trip is his story to tell. I'm just observing from the sidelines. But I see it, that jaggety little edge. And I want him to feel welcomed home, and have time to settle back in and refresh, recoup, re-enter life here too.
It's the juxtaposition: the beauty and the hard.
On all levels.
Just like when we've gone to Ethiopia and elsewhere....you get a little bit torn, a bit of you is sheared off. And you have to learn to live around that scar once you are back home.
It takes a bit of time.
And even with all this, it's so worth it.
I am proud of him, and also so glad he's back.
And for Tom? Well, he's a little tired, but happy too, quiet.
He said it's wonderful to be home.
We think so too.