"We finally made it to the hotel at 10:30 last night... We had training today to figure out what we are going to be doing in the clinic. Rachel and I are being treated as doctors, so we will be examining the health of the patient's eye and figuring out their prescriptions. It's pretty awesome. There are 40 of us total and 8 are doctors, including us. We have 2 Mexican optometrists too...I get to see my first real patient tomorrow!"
"Clinic for our first day was exhausting and awesome. We got there at about 8am, but sat around until 10am when we had an opening ceremony with governmental officials from rotary, and our partners DIF and the Devlyn Foundation... I spent most of the day looking at the back of the eye. I saw some really cool stuff that I probably wouldn't see in 6 mos of clinic in St Louis...[A]ltogether we saw 1500ish...We stayed until we saw everyone and were done by 830pm. Most of us were ready to collapse... After we ate cold fries and sub sandwiches, most of us went to our rooms...Hope to not be quite as late tomorrow."
"I think we saw 1200 people today. I got to give out my first pair of glasses and that's a smile you will never forget. I think she was a young girl, about 9 or so...The coolest thing I saw today was something called asteroid hyalosis...it looks like a snowstorm of gold flakes in the back of the eye. Google it if you like. I also referred some patients for diabetes and glaucoma."
"Today was kid day. We saw 1,324 kids bussed in from various schools. My back hurts from bending over, but there was lots of fun and smiles. Apparently in Mexico a doctor is like a huge deal and so is seeing a doctor so the kids were intimidated by us. I got a few to smile and one to give me a big hug. Took some cute photos too. The nice thing about today was if we didn't have the right glasses, we got to order custom frames for the kids that will be paid for and mailed to the schools by the Mexican government."
"...The days have started to kind of run together... Yesterday was our last day of clinic before two days off. It started off pretty normal, but pretty soon it seemed like the line of people was never going to end. Saw lots of cool eye disease. I also referrred a couple people to get their cholesterol and blood pressure...We realized later in the day that even though the Mexican government had only given out 10,000 tickets for two weeks, one ticket was getting whole families in to be seen. This meant we were seeing way more people than we anticipated...Nothing like a 12 hr day when you feel like you're moving in slow motion."
"Yesterday ran much smoother than any of our days so far. We saw 1500 patients and only broke a little sweat. The only problem we had was we started really late. Apparently the Mexican Secretary of Health advertised us on the radio, so we had 3,000 people waiting outside when we got there...I had one other hard moment yesterday when I had to tell a woman with a botched cataract surgery that she wasnt going to be able to see well out of that eye again. Apparently the surgeon never told her that. Not used to delivering that kind of bad news. But lots of good moments too. I made some new friends with the translators."
"Today was a breeze. We had 1001 patients, only 30 of which were adults. The good thing about kids is that they are very cute and, for the most part, have very healthy eyes...The cutest was when I told a little boy he needed glasses to help with school. He kind of got upset and asked if he really needed them. I told him yes they would help him a lot. Then he looked at me and said, "but I dont have any money." I was very happy I could tell him the glasses were free."