I remember when we had four small rascally boys underfoot and Donny brought home the chicken pox. I was house bound for two weeks with each case. One month of isolation was the worst part for me. I never feared my child would die from the pox. Back then we would invite all our friends over so their kids could get the chicken pox and get it over with while they were young. It isn’t something anyone wants to get as an adult. I know. I was sixteen when I got a severe case of it. The moms would get on the phone that was wired to the kitchen wall and call everyone to announce there was chicken pox available. Oh goodness, I am recalling the “phone chains” we participated in when news needed to be spread. In a group one person had ten people to call and share important news so it would get out quickly. Oh my how things change in twenty years.
Getting the chicken pox was the only guarantee for immunity, but by the time Jack came around it was mandatory to inoculate against it. The vaccination must work because Jack and Kira were in Uganda when the first case of chicken pox appeared in our family there and neither of them have it.
I learned that Boniface had such a low CD4 count that he wasn’t yet able to take the ARV drugs for HIV. These stronger drugs help them fight illnesses with more immunity. His CD4 was rising steadily since we began taking him to the better HIV hospital but they were still waiting for his count to rise before he could tolerate the stronger drugs. The other little person in our home who has HIV has a very high CD4 and has been taking ARVs for a long time.
Four more children have the chicken pox this week, including the one with the special case of HIV. The disease is no fun. There’s a lot of itching, no play, no fun, and for them they wear white calamine lotion on dark skin. But for our staff, oh my, they are burdened. This new batch of the sickness that took our Bonny has arrived too quickly. Anxiety is tilted up, stress is crackling, and hearts are still sore. While not sleeping through the middle of the night I communicated with Robert, Phiona and Christopher as they rushed our special patient to the hospital as any good parent would do. They don’t want to take any chances.
This is the fourth cycle of chicken pox to come around our home since I was there in January. Our team is emotionally deflated, but spiritually high powered. At the hospital they assured them they are doing all that can be done for this child. The CD4 count is as high as it has ever been so it looks like the little body can put up a good fight. Of course I’ll keep you up to date on this condition. Meanwhile please pray for the strength of the family as they feel fear and handle four children suffering with the pox. Pray for the child to overcome the concerning cocktail of chicken pox and HIV. This case may go on far longer than normal. Pray that pneumonia doesn’t come in and complicate things further. And especially pray for our team working with the children. They love these kids as their own, and they are full blown parents with every smile and tear that goes along with raising a family. Please share scriptures of encouragement in the comments and bless them with your compassion. Or you can email me specifically and I’ll forward your encouragement to them directly. I know they need to feel the power of God working through his people to love the fatherless as they do with their hands on and hearts glued. All of you who care about our children are the extended family of Kirabo Seeds. I believe God brought you to these children for his purposes of loving, equipping and providing. Thank you for honoring the call.
We know for sure God is good all the time even when what is happening to us feels bad. The belief in that and the ability to lean hard on it is what grows our faith. He has the plan and we are all just a small part in it. Serving God by helping these children is our passion and when it feels good we have fun, when it feels horrible we still rejoice that God has a purpose for everything he does. No one on our team is questioning their faith, it is being strengthened day by day through our trials. But hearts are sore and they need the salve of scripture, compassion, love and encouragement. Please reach out and make a difference in the lives of our family at Kirabo Seeds.