Thursday, November 26, 2015


Team Jacmel 2015
It is Thanksgiving Day in Wichita. The vast plains sky is a solid cloud of grey and it is raining, that specific Midwest type of rain that is only a few degrees shy of sleet. It is the perfect day to hunker down in front of the fire with family, eat too much food, watch too much football, and just revel in the joy of togetherness. This is a special holiday – focused more on community, less on 'stuff'– a holiday about family and friends and remembering how much we all have to be thankful for.

In the stormy cold of Wichita, I am far from the tropical heat and blue skies of Jacmel. It has been less than a week since we jumped on tiny jets and left our coastal stomping grounds. On this day, as I reflect on all that I am thankful for, I am tremendously humbled by the family of dear friends who shared that special week. I am thankful for such willing and generous volunteers who gave their time, money, skill and hearts to care for children in Haiti. I am thankful for the Haitian team who welcomed us, supported us and taught us so much about their beautiful, hopeful people and the spirit of their special island. I am thankful for our patients and their families who trusted this posse of Blancs to take the best care of their children. And I am thankful for the countless family and friends who support our team financially and emotionally as we continue to move through this experience.

During our last team meeting, the common theme was certainly one fitting of this Thanksgiving holiday. This experience taught us so much about being thankful – for a smile, a touch, a spirited game of balloon volleyball, a gentle carry to the operating room, privacy in the recovery room, sincere attention, respect, hope, and grace. By the fortune of our birthplace, we ‘have’ more than most – but do we have more of what matters? I think we do. I think we just have to look for it, and be thankful for it everyday, not just on this cold day in Wichita.

Happy Thanksgiving! Love, Suzy