That’s such a simple word but after spending this past week on my first international trip it is the perfect word.
I have spent the last week in what is (in my opinion) the most beautiful place in the world, the sights, sounds, smells, people, and feelings in Guatemala are absolutely incredible. I did not know what to expect going into an unknown country and an unknown experience, I just know I wanted to hopefully make an impact on some lives that may possibly be less fortunate than mine.
When we arrived we were greeted with open arms and hearts by the most warm, gracious, and genuine people I have ever met. The fact that about 60 providers most of whom had never met and about 20 volunteers from Guatemala were able to come together as a team and work for a common goal and make it work so smoothly is such a great feeling, to be part of a team like that has been a life altering experience. Every day was a new clinic with new experiences, new patients, and new problems, but with the help of some amazing staff and translators I feel that we were able to make a difference in many lives.
I know my life was impacted greatly by the chance I got to experience this. I often take so many things for granted and am extremely spoiled. By observing and helping our patients I am now aware of just how lucky I have always been and never really understood. The elderly gentleman that got a cane, and made sure to walk around the clinic shaking everyone’s hand to show his gratitude, the mother that just wanted to know her baby was okay and look of relief on her face, the little boy who got his first pair of glasses and who’s face lit up from the fact that he was able to read, the children that were entertained for hours by gloves blown up like balloons… not just asking for an iPhone to play with.
So like I said,
What an AMAZING experience.
¡Muchas gracias Guatemala! ¡te extrañaré y voy a verte pronto!
– Cory, IMR Team Guatemala