How time flies. The first semester of our second year in the medical school has ended just like that. It feels like yesterday when I entered this adventure of a lifetime.
The end of another semester in the academic arena signals another month to be spent outside the comforts of the city, in our second home: Sergio Osmeña, Zamboanga del Norte. I think about it and it thrills me – how amazing it is to be of hope to others again.
This third exposure felt different. Slowly, we have built friendships in this place. Coming back to Sinai is something I really look forward to this time. We may be away from our families, but seeing people we have not seen for a few months now gives me a sense of comfort by itself.
It was November 11, 2016 when we arrived. We started our exposure by rebuilding our rapport with the people in the barangay. It was great to feel at home in Sinai. There went the children outside our house We met Auntie Mercy, Ma’am Lilian and Ma’am Myerna again. Of course it was nice seeing “Kap” flashing his warmest smile, as if a father welcoming his children back. Indeed we are back, we are really back. Perhaps the hardest challenge we have to do for this exposure is beginning our implementation. We had to plan for it well. We need not to fail the people of Sinai.
Pairs were assigned per community health problem. From our Zumba sessions every other day to our daycare coloring activities on the basic food groups, to our seminars on Solid Waste Management, and then our mass animal vaccination: everything seems to be worth it, most especially after a simple “thank you Doc” from a middle-aged woman. There are many days when we may seem tired from all the planning and preparations but upon seeing the response from people, it all makes sense. We are here for reasons we may not fully understand but the sense of fulfillment this whole experience is providing us with gives me strength to move forward.
So far, we have a good start and I’m glad to say that this is only the beginning.