Archives For spina bifida

At the special needs orphanage supported by Global Partners in Life, there was a girl that had a huge smile that would make anyone who saw it happy.  Unfortunately, she is no longer there — she was one of the many children removed from the orphanage by the government, because she didn’t have any official registration and she had never been adopted. Would you like to meet her?

Another unfortunate thing about this little girl named Qi Qi is that she had spina bifida with the tethered spine syndrome. What all that meant was that she had a hole in her spine at birth, but it was surgically closed. Also, she had no feeling from her waist down, and she couldn’t walk well at all, and she had to wear a diaper, so she couldn’t attend school. Additionally, she would get sores on her lower body, like her foot that would never completely heal.

Many different medicines were tried to help her with this wound.  Both Eastern and Western medical approaches were tried, and sometimes the wound would almost heal, but then it would open again. Through all of the daily treatments and medicines, she never seemed to let this health issue get her down.

What is troubling to me is that now she has been removed from the special needs orphanage and I can’t learn how she is doing. I truly care for Qi Qi, but now that she is in the government’s care, I doubt I will ever see her again.

There is a new government program in China which guarantees orphans an education and medical treatments, and I have been told by an American doctor this program has been good so far. I do take comfort in that, but I would still love to see her smile again and know how she is doing. Watching her grow up and then suddenly she is gone has been difficult for Qi Qi, the lady that leads the special needs orphanage, and me! 

I am very thankful for the supporters of Global Partners in Life, who enabled us to provide for Qi Qi and meet her needs while she was at the special needs orphanage.     

The Smile

October 20, 2016 — Leave a comment

We have an expression which says a person has a smile that will light up a room. Well, I want to tell you about a person where this saying is absolutely true! My little friend can not only light up a room, but she can fill your heart with joy when she smiles at you — see for yourself below.

Always with a smile, despite having spina bifida!

This photograph was taken in 2009, when Global Partners in Life had been supporting her special needs orphanage in China for three or four years. She is very playful, and she loves to go outside.

Unfortunately, she isn’t allowed to walk around much, because she has spina bifida with a tethered spine syndrome. She can’t walk very well at all, and it isn’t a good idea to spend much time on her feet, because she has a wound that won’t heal. She doesn’t have any feeling from her waist down, so it doesn’t hurt her; but battling an infection is a constant in her life.

spina bifida foot wound of a special needs orphan

I have watched her wound have the dressing changed many times. Sometimes the wound is much larger than it appears in this picture. We spend at least $1,000 a year for the medicines that fight infections and some that attempt to close the wound. The doctors tell us that if the infection gets into her bone, then she will need to have her foot amputated.

Even though my friend has battled this condition for many years, she never seems to let this get her down or slow her down. I am sure there is a lesson in this for me, and I should remember her when I am throwing a pity party for myself!

Please support Global Partners in Life so we can continue to provide the medical attention needed by this little girl and several others!