When 25-year-old Mercy arrived on the Africa Mercy to be accessed by the screening team, she was in a state of depression. She looked older than her years as she spoke of the sadness and suffering that had consumed her.
Orphaned as a young child, she had lost both of her own children to sickness in the last three years. It was during this time of grief that she first noticed the lump in her mouth, which eventually grew to a large tumour.
‘I was so down I didn’t even think about my health,’ Mercy said. ‘Everyone I have been close to has been taken from me. I wanted to die.’
When her church in Liberia heard that Mercy Ships was coming to Guinea, they came together to raise enough funds to send Mercy to find help. The two-day trek to the port city of Conakry was long and tiring, but Mercy knew she had no other choice. Tears slowly fell down her face as she sat patiently waiting for the outcome of her screening.
The past three years had seen her struggle to eat, talk, and eventually even breathe. But after a long wait, the news finally came that she was approved for surgery! She began to sing right there on the dock, filled with a joy she had forgotten how to feel! Mercy was given something she hadn’t had in a long time — hope.
Following the operation to remove her tumour, Mercy smiled at the thought of all the future held. ‘I am so happy to have been given a chance,’ she said. ‘I have been sad for too long.’
As she began the journey back to Liberia, she finally started to imagine what her life might be like — dreaming dreams she had not let herself imagine before. Despite still grieving the loss of her children, she now believes she has a chance to try again.
‘I would like to find a husband now, and maybe one day I will have children again. That is possible now that I know I will not die,’ Mercy said. ‘I am so thankful to Mercy Ships because now I can start again.’
Written by: Georgia Ainsworth