Thursday, August 27, 2009
Today started off shaky. I didn’t feel well on the bus ride to the clinic. Felt shaky, light headed, incredibly anxious for some reason and as we lined up for our morning prayer, tears began to come like it or not. As the awesome leader he is, Nathan, our full time Nica leader, noticed and quietly pulled me out of the circle to breathe, grab some Gatorade, and gather myself. I am not sure if everything was taking a toll on my body or if my new station in the clinic of “eye glasses” was freaking me out subconsciously.
I had wanted to be willing to go where I was needed and gladly accepted the request to serve in glasses this morning, but on the inside I was terrified. I know nothing about glasses. Have never worn them and definitely had never tried to fit someone for them. On top of that, we would not have a translator in our station, which meant speaking in Spanish about glasses. Awesome. With a few prayers, okay a LOT of prayers, and Mary and Amber’s patience and help, Rachel and I mastered just enough Spanish to be able to say to our patients in Spanish: “please stand here, can you read this line? How about this line? Is it clear or blurry? Is the problem reading or distance? Too strong or do you need stronger?” Whew. Here goes nothing!
(Fast forward 8 hours) As I lay in my bed after surviving the day, I am realizing that I’ve learned more Spanish in 8 hours than I did in 6 years of classes! Not to mention, I was able to give 20 people glasses!! AWESOME. I, me, little ole me, was able to help renew someone’s sight right before my very eyes! I can assure you that I have never felt anything better than what I felt when you can see sight, clear sight, come back to someone after years of blurred vision. My arm hair stood on end every single time and I had to fight back tears, after all, I was the professional (or so they thought). Praise God for donated, 1987ish glasses. I also learned that Nicaraguans care just as much about how glasses look as we do. We had to talk a few women into choosing the glasses that they actually read better with versus the smaller, more fashionable ones. Too cute. It made me laugh that even in a poverty stricken country, fashion is still important to women everywhere.