Thursday, June 4, 2015


I left Haiti on May 24th. It was very hard to say good-bye to everyone. Patients, students, little children, neighbors, colleagues, roommates, friends - they have been my Haiti family and leaving them behind hurt. A lot.
Creole is such a limited language that the only way to explain my move back to the US was to use the phrase, "M prale net", which translates to "I'm leaving for good." Every time someone asked me, "Mis Keziah, ou prale net?" I wanted to hide somewhere and cry for hours.
I won't try to describe what it's like to say "I'm leaving," to a dirt-poor single mother who has been your friend for 5 years, a woman that you were with when her 2 youngest children died.
I won't attempt to convey how empty I felt after saying good-bye to the young men who helped me sew wounds shut and save the lives of burned children.

I won't try to make you understand what it felt like to ride the dusty paths of the Savann Desole and know that I will never ride those trails again with my bike crew.
I won't try to explain how the words choked in my throat when I tried to tell my roommates what it has meant to me that they have loved me through my best and worst moments.

And I won't try to put words to the gut-wrenching pain of hugging Johnny J while he stared solemnly at me, confused by my tears.

I said my good-byes to them, and now, it's good-bye to you, dear blog readers. Thank you for your prayers and kindness over the years. Thank you for sharing my Haiti life with me. I am going to be making an effort at living "normal" life now, so I will not blog anymore. If you want to contact me, please email me at, and please, don't stop praying for me. In some ways, the hardest part of my journey starts now.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Final days

My final days in Haiti were jam-packed. I still had class every day, and because Cody, our clinic director and nurse, was in the US, I was helping in clinic much more than usual. My TAs graciously shared the last sessions with me so I got to teach a few subjects one last time. I also worked on preparing all the class materials, sample tests and answer keys, books, games and other supplies so that my TAs could work as smoothly as possible in my absence.

I crammed the afternoons, evenings, and holidays with Haiti fun. I took a couple kids from our school out to the countryside to pick mangoes and visit old fort ruins. I hiked with my friends and biked with my friends. We went to the pool and picnicked by the river. I played with kids in the schoolyard and let little Down's syndrome Jesula and burn victim Samantha play with me whenever I wasn't teaching.




I didn't sleep very much. There were too many people to see and things to do. How do you try to wrap up 8 years of your life? How do you try to do all the "last" things that you've loved in a country? The last mango, the last class, the last reading session with the 4th grade, the last avocado, the last tickle session with a little kid, the last suturing, the last ridiculous party with your roommates, the last sunburn, the last bike ride...It was impossible and beautiful and exhausting and at some moments, unbearably sad.