My extended holiday has finally come to an end. For about 3 weeks my life, my schedule, ect were completely abnormal. First it was all the Christmas festivities, the New Years, and then my trip to La Paz. Holidays in Bolivia are not just a one day ordeal... it sometimes takes days for the city to return to normal. One of the most relieving things about the last couple of weeks is that there has been no blockades or buisness closures. It was very kind of the protesters to take a break for the holidays!
So this week I got back to the grind of daily life. I have Spanish class for 2 hours a day, I try to give at least another 2 hours or so to studying time.
I have also been given my first ministry assignment. One of the little girls in the first orphange (Vivianna) is a special needs child. She was flown into Coch serveral months ago from a jungle village where she either fell or was pushed into a fire. Her entire back and most of her legs were terribly burned. Thank God, her face was completly untouched by the fire. She has come a very very long way in the last couple of months. It is now my responsibility to take her 4 days a week to the burn therapist for an hour of theapy. Hospitals in general make me a little queazy and it is hard to see the other children waiting for their theapy as some of them are even worse off then Vivianna. While Vivianna is having her theapy I use that time to study my spanish book. In time I hope to be able to have conversation with the other women waiting with their children.
An intresting aspect of the story is that Spanish is neither mine nor Vivianna´s first language! We are both in the same boat as we continue to learn Spanish. Vivianna´s first language is not Quechua as I had thought but is a totally different language from the jungle. There is something like 17 languagues spoken in Bolivia. So we have a fine time trying to talk to each other! But hugs, humming songs, smiles, and candy go a long way in communication. She has finally managed to remember my name!
I wish I could say that the bad stuff is over for her but its not. She will probably have a couple of more surgeries in the near future so she can have more movement with her arms. She also needs to see a doctor for some sores that are not healing by themselves. We are not certian of her exact age but I would say she is between 5 & 7 years old. She´s been through more in her young life then most adults in this world. Please keep Vivianna in your prayers. Thanks be to God, someone from the States has covered her medical expenses 100%. Please pray for her continued healing, language learning, and emotional health as well. I will try to put a picture of us in next months update email, she is a beauty!