There is much I will miss about our lives in the U.S., but one of things I am going to miss deeply is the people I work with at Skagit Valley Hospital. The nurses, techs, surgeons, everyone there has been so supportive of what we are doing in Burundi. It is truly an incredible group of people, and I have never felt so at home going to work each morning, as I have for the past 8 years.
It is such a joy to connect people to our work in Burundi, and the people I work with have supported us in so many ways, from financial support, to sending us care packages while we were in Kibuye last year, to simply reading our blog posts and staying engaged. And so, you can imagine my excitement when two of the general surgeons I work with agreed to travel to Kibuye and cover for Jason for 2 weeks each, consecutively. When people ask about specific needs in Kibuye, there is so much it is hard to know where to begin, but one thing we always need is surgeons to go and cover for or work alongside Jason, who is massively overworked. These two surgeons sacrificed a great deal to go and work in a hard place (made harder by the fact that much of the long term team was out of the country at our mission agency's retreat, which happens once every 3 years). They got to experience firsthand the need and the challenges of healthcare in Burundi, and they both returned deeply affected by their experience. I am truly grateful to both of them as well as to all of my friends at Skagit Valley Hospital who have encouraged me in so many ways. I will miss you all.
I hope in the years to come I can continue to connect friends back home to this work, and I hope more and more people will go and serve. The work is hard, but it is good.