|Posted on:||Tuesday, 27th August, 2019|
For 2 years, Salomé was blind due to cataracts, which had robbed her of vision, leaving her isolated, struggling to care for her grandchildren and unable to read her precious bible. But in April, thanks to our supporters Salomé had sight-saving surgery at our partner hospital, Kabgayi Eye Unit, in Rwanda, changing her life forever.
In case you missed it, you can relive her journey from darkness to light:
Salomé lives in rural Rwanda with her daughter, Eudosie, and her three grandchildren. She longs to be able to do more to help her daughter, who works all day to feed the family. But it’s hard to care for her grandchildren as she can’t see.
“I can’t even see light so I can’t even make a fire to cook.” She hopes that after cataract surgery, their lives will be easier.
Salomé prepares to travel to CBM’s partner hospital and asks the angels to watch over her house while she is away.
As Salomé waves goodbye to her neighbours, she has a huge smile on her face. “I’m very happy, I’m not feeling nervous or afraid, only happy....Because I’m going to find a part of me that was lost.”
Salome is in the waiting room prepped for surgery. There are 23 other patients waiting with her, wearing their blue gowns for theatre. More patients are still waiting on the benches outside. The atmosphere in the waiting area is quite anxious and subdued.
Salomé prays with her daughter as they prepare for the day ahead.
Salomé is out of surgery!
Dr Theophile removed the cataracts clouding Salomé’s vision. And so far the news is good…
“We are very happy with the surgery from today”, says Dr Theophile.
Throughout the week of Salomé’s surgery, supporters in the UK have been sending her prayers and messages of support.
As Salomé waits for her eye patch to be removed, she reads their kind words, giving her strength and encouragement. Salomé is grateful for these supporters who have enabled her surgery to happen through their generous donations.
It’s time for Salomé’s eye patch to be removed…
“It may take some time for your eyes to adjust”, warns Ophthalmic Clinical Officer Jado as he gently removes the patch from Salomé’s eye. But even while he is still removing the tape from her face, her face breaks into a broad smile. “I can see you clearly, all of you! I have not seen you before,” exclaims Salomé.
What a precious moment seeing your grandchild for the first time. Salomé is reunited with baby Jean Baptiste and can’t stop smiling.
She can’t wait to go home and see the hills, her neighbours and her older grandchildren. All the things she has missed for so long. “There will be great celebration and thanking God” she says.
Salomé returns home after a life-changing week.
“This morning I woke up full of joy, it’s like I have been dead but have now come back to life! As I’m walking I can see things I haven’t seen for a long time. Everything is new, I’m so happy!”
She has new hope for the future, thanks to supporters like you!
Six weeks after her cataract operation, Salomé returns to Kabgayi hospital for a check-up. Dr Theophile says she has regained 90% of her vision.
“The first thing I noticed was the smile coming from her joyful heart. She is very happy and very strong. You could see her moving from one place to another without any fear or hesitation.” says Dr Theophile.
Salomé and Eudosie beam as they explain how their life has changed since regaining her sight. “I was living in darkness but now there is light again in my life. When I wake up every morning I am able to see the sunshine and feel happy. My life is now full of lots of joy that I can’t express with words!” says Salomé.
“For me, life is different. The burden has reduced. I now have hope for the future.” says Eudosie.
Salomé’s faith has been a great comfort to her and she is thrilled to be able to go back to church again.
“I felt really happy when arrived at the church. I enjoyed seeing again the priest and the choir singing and the whole congregation. I was thanking God for restoring my sight, even though my words were not enough, and asking him to bless the sons and daughters who supported for my eye treatment.”
Salomé’s life has been transformed by the precious gift of sight, thanks to the generosity of people like you.
“I want to thank the people who supported me. May God bless you, support you, and always God be on your side as you did it for me. May God gives you eternal life! I don’t really have the appropriate words to express my gratitude to you, God bless you!” says Salomé.
Thanks to your support for our See the Way appeal and match funding from the UK government, more people like Salomé will access sight-saving treatment. Find out more about CBM’s sight-saving work and how you can get help people like Salomé in the world’s poorest places.