Living in the After
By Kara Sassine
Seven years ago today, the goudou goudou – as Haitians refer to the 7.4 magnitude earthquake – struck Haiti and indelibly changed the country and its people. I know I’m not the only one who now looks at this date as a pivotal point in not only my country’s history, but my personal history as well. All events, people and circumstances in my life (whether good or bad) prior to January 12, 2010 are “before” and everything since has been “after”.
I’ll never forget that day and all the losses that came with it; how can I or we as Haitians – when the very ground we built our foundation on crumbled beneath our feet. Despite the catastrophic damages and the struggles that still lay before us, it is vital for us to seek out and embrace the positive things that have occurred in this new “after” in which we are now living.
So today, as so many mourn and remember their losses, including me, I encourage you to see the hope and perseverance that has never left Haiti. There is a beautiful Haitian Creole saying: “Apré lapwi, solèy lévé”. It means: “After the rain, the sun rises”. Well, Haiti’s been through quite a few terrible rains, but we never stop looking for the first ray of sun.
Kara is Project Medishare’s Communications Coordinator. She lost her mother during the earthquake.