I always feel rather ill-qualified for the work of an interpreter for MDP and their Guatemalan patients; they deserve the best, but they welcome me in spite of my limitations. Basically, I like to get things right…but that doesn’t always happen.
Today, for example, my confusing-but-quickly rectified mistake was to tell a woman that her darling 3-year-old son had and ailment that I described in Spanish as “gossip.” Surprisingly enough, she hadn’t heard of that malady. As recently as last November, I actually knew the Spanish term for “heart murmur” (“soplo”), but today my memory failed me and I had to turn to technology, which, understandably, translated the English “murmur” into the Spanish “murmura.” Yup, that little kid simply had a case of “gossip.”
While the mom and the boy were still being examined by Dr. Cathy Davis, I told Jesus Antonio, the parish health coordinator that Cathy had asked if the boy could be scheduled for an ultrasound. Fortunately, I learned that Jesus Antonio and the mother were well aware of the boy’s heart murmur and, in fact, he is on a list to have a small surgery to help him out.
Now this was a sort of humorous story up until this point. But here’s the pathetic part: This child won’t be able to have the surgery until his family can afford to get him a ride to the hospital and back.
All of a sudden, my limitations seem few compared to this innocent and deserving little guy,
Lord, I truly don’t understand the inequities of our human lives. Please teach me to be grateful for what I have, while at the same time to do what I can for others.
Cathy Davis, M.D., Co-leader & Intake