What is your diarrhea medicine of choice?
Do you buy the white chalky stuff, the pink chewable tablets or the liquid form? I usually chose the one that works almost immediately; you know that small pill in a travel size pouch. I ask this question because for most of us diarrhea is usually not much more than an uncomfortable annoyance. Over-the-counter medications can usually relieve it and even a severe case can be treated by a doctor and resolved in a day or two. But for many children around the world, diarrhea is a death sentence.
I have been on staff at Food for the Hungry, in the area of Child Sponsorship for almost 10 years. I think about children all day long. I think about life in “the hard places” and how families don’t have many choices. While I can pop into the corner drugstore and buy medication to relieve a symptom, another mother will cry over her suffering child, helpless to change the outcome. When I buckle up my grandchildren in their car seats, how do moms in desperate places protect their toddlers from accidents? When you give your kids a cool bottle of sparkling, clear water, some other parent has to choose between giving their child cloudy brown water from a ditch or no water at all.
In places where tsunamis have washed away everything, where droughts kills crops, cattle and people, and where rice is precious enough to put in the offering plate on Sunday, choices can be very difficult. Moms choose to send their children on long daily journeys to collect water. Believing the lies of a stranger to provide a better life and education for her young daughter, a mother may agree to give up her child, only to be delivered into a life of bondage. With several children in the family and enough money to send only one child to school, a mother must choose which one can go. Hard decisions, tough choices.
Mothers in all economic and geographical situations, have so much in common.
Even with an uneven playing field, we all hope to raise healthy, happy kids and see them become strong and good adults.
If you’re like me, you have the luxury of choosing things like diarrhea medicine; it may be good to consider those who have very few options in life and must make difficult choices every day to raise their children.
If you would like to sponsor a child with FH, go to www.fh.org/sponsor