|Sally on admission to the Africa Mercy|
Finally i have one of the stories, written by a Mercy Ships writer, about Sally, one of my orthopedic patients.
“Sometimes, I would just sit down and cry,” said Sally with great emotion. For seventeen years, people laughed at her and mocked her because of her legs – horribly misshapen and knock-kneed. The constant verbal abuse made her feel ashamed. Walking was difficult and tiring, so she didn’t go to school. She just stayed at home in her misery.
The problem was caused by a car accident when she was only ten years old. A witch doctor blanketed her legs with a native concoction of boiled leaves. Splints of wooden sticks were tied to her legs for three months. But nothing changed; she returned home with bent legs. Without money for surgery, she had to learn to live with her disability.
Three years ago, Sally’s parents died. Since she had no siblings, she went to live with a friend. Her friend found a mentor to teach Sally to sew, and she eventually went to work at a dressmaker’s shop. In fact, she hopes to own her own shop some day.
A friend at work told her that a Mercy Ship, offering orthopedic surgeries at no charge, would soon be in Sierra Leone. She encouraged Sally to go to the screening. Surgeons on the Africa Mercy surgically repaired her legs and put them in casts.
When she awoke in the ward, she was delighted to see that her legs were both straight in the casts. But when her casts were changed, she was ecstatic. “I could see my legs were straight,” said Sally with a brilliant smile. “It’s like a dream, and I’m an angel that can walk on straight legs!”
|Sally rejoicing at having physio remove her casts for the last time|
Another bonus of the surgery is that her straightened legs add height to her physical stature. When she walked on her bandaged legs for the first time, she exclaimed, “I’m so amazed. I used to be a short somebody. Now, I’m tall.”
Sally knew what she would do first after being released from the hospital ship. “I want to give my testimony at church of what Mercy Ships did for me. If it were not for Mercy Ships, I was going to die with legs like that, because I had no money. I was mocked every place I went. I’m thanking God for what He has done for me, and I’m asking Him to bless you people.”