As I drive down this dusty, unpaved road, I thought about how one year ago I would have thought that this trip would be inconsequential to my personal life. My purpose was to help those who were in a danger that was completely omnipresent. I arrived exactly one month ago. The first thing I saw was a dead person on the road. The danger was constant.
Yet as I drive, I know that my life is forever changed. I will never forget what I have seen, or what I have been through.
This would probably make more sense if I told you the entire story, not just the end.
My name is Isabella Swan. I am part of the Red Cross Organization. I traveled to Darfur, Sudan exactly one month ago. My purpose was to help those in need. I was eager to leave my non-existent life behind for one that would surely affect others positively.
It was in Darfur that I met Edward Cullen. I was to be his assistant over the course of the next few weeks.
One month ago…..:
I drove into the camp already detesting the area. I hated the people who had done such horrible things. The camp was full of people on the verge of dieing. I quickly took my place in the group of doctors.
"Her heart rate is erratic, we need to stabilize her!" the doctor yelled.
I realized I was out of my element. I had no idea what to do in this situation. I was supposed to be helping orphaned children.
"Mrs. Swan?" A voice behind me inquired. I whipped around to face the god like face of the man before me.
"I am Edward Cullen. I believe you are to be my assistant. I think you're in the wrong place," he smirked. I quickly removed myself from the group of doctors.
"It's nice to meet you Mr. Cullen," I said as a blush formed on my cheeks. I followed him to a small tent in the back where he had been staying. We talked briefly and than set out for the tent that held all the orphaned kids. We didn't talk as we walked, and I was fine with that. I had much to think over.
What was going on in Darfur was beyond horrible. It was something that could not continue to happen. Before leaving for Darfur I had been involved in numerous groups whose goals were to bring awareness and help to Darfur. Through those groups I learned that hundreds of Black Africans were being killed by Arabs who were under the command of the president of Sudan. These people were being slaughtered due to ethnicity.
Edward pulled aside the tent flap for me and I ducked inside. He followed me in and then sauntered over to a table stacked high with papers, dust blowing up around his shoes with each step.
"This," he said, gesturing to the papers, "is all the information we have on the children. This isn't our subject though. You and I will be going out and trying to find more children before they get killed. Are you ready?" I nodded slowly. We walked around the table to the first child. I gasped and I felt Edward stiffen up next to me.
The child before us had a large and bloody bandage around his head. What was even more horrifying was that both his left arm and leg had been blown off by some kind of explosion. The permanence of his situation made me sick. This child would never be able to live land play like other children ever again.
"He is in a coma," Edward whispered. It was then that I noticed the steady beeping coming from the machine next to the bed. Edward pulled me aside.
"If you think that was bad, just know that it will only get worse for that kid. The doctors are doing everything that they can, but he may not make it through the night. I just wanted to make sure you would be able to handle that kind of horror. I can't have you fainting on me," he smiled briefly, but I could see that it was forced.
"I understand," I muttered. He lifted his hand up to softly stroke my cheek.
"Keep in mind that this was a very noble choice for you to make. These children need us, and I need your help." I leaned into his hand and nodded. I couldn't find my voice. I knew that what I was about to do would be harder than anything I had or would ever do.
Edward took my hand and we walked over to a large van. He helped me in before walking over to the driver's seat. He got in and drove the car down a side road, leaving only dust in our wake.
It was a very long day. We rescued two abandoned children, but I had to watch another child die before we could save her. By the time we got back to camp I was done.
"Don't give up," Edward told me, "Just keep thinking of those two kids we saved today. Without us they would be dead. You can never give up hope, not when everybody else already has." He was right and I knew it. So I spent every waking hour for the next month trying to help the people of Darfur. When it was time to leave I felt like I had exiled a lot of the fear residing in these people. I knew that the hardship was far from over, but hopefully I had helped our cause enough to make a difference.
Back to the present
Now I sit here hoping that when I get back home my experience will be enough to convince people that Darfur needs our help. Because that is all that is needed to start off, people just need to be aware and they need to help.