Monday, August 30, 2010
So, clinic went well with some interesting patients.
A mother brought a baby in that was covered below the waist with a terrible infection. She had gone to the local pharmacy and they had sold her some anti-fungal cream and now it was definitely infected.
Another baby was brought in and we are not sure if the baby has had any stools since he was born. I thought I had one story and when Lisa talked to the family it seemed different so we are not sure. The baby appears to be very healthy with no vomiting or distention and has gained a pound since last week. Hopefully, we will get an update soon.
It was a good clinic with 26 medical patients and 2 patients for dental cleanings.
Tomorrow, I will work at home and then on Wednesday we will go to Chuguexa................
Sunday, August 29, 2010
I received a call last night from Sergio's dad saying that they were coming to Chichi today and asked where the Church of Christ met. I gave them directions and told him that I would wait outside for them. I was so excited to see the family of Sergio and Marvin. I pray that they will return.
It was a good weekend.........popcorn, Law and Order and a little rain in the background...........
Friday, August 27, 2010
Wendy, came with Marcos and today is her birthday. Happy Birthday, Wendy!
We had a small clinic of only 7 medical patients and 6 dental patients. We did not see anything unusual and there were 5 people from the church helping us today.
Thursday, August 26, 2010
As I mentioned last night, we did not have any electricity. I actually slept about 10 hours and it was great! We still not have electricity this morning nor did I have water. Just another one of those things and life will sometime get back to "normal."
The first two patients that came to the clinic this morning had more concerns for their husbands and family than they did for themselves. The first lady is not able to sleep or eat but does not have any obvious physical causes. The more we talked, the more she told me about her family issues. Her husband drinks a lot and the second patient had many of the same issues.
Addiction, no matter the type, strains relationships and also the family as a whole. The person addicted may or may not admit it. Until that person wants to change, the spouse or family is almost helpless. I use the term almost because there are still some things that can be be done but they are not easy.
I talked to these ladies today about prayer and continuing to love their spouse. There are many examples in the Bible about prayer and it's strength. Paul wrote to the church in Ephesus about his prayer for them.
We had 15 patients today and it was a good clinic. We had a new diabetic with a blood sugar of over 500 and we talked about his diet.
About 11am the electricity returned...........ahhhhh, life is "normal" again.
I hope that something was said to encourage all of the patients and that they will return.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
I have always enjoyed the drive to this area. It is very pretty and in places you rise above the clouds. Today, it looked as if the mountains in the distance were covered by snow.
The guys pulled out their cameras and also took some photos :)
School was not in session today so it was very quiet when we arrived. Within a short time, patients began to arrive.
We had a record day of 19 patients and we were very excited.
When we were finished, Manuel told me that we were going to eat in a fancy restaurant called, "The Pines." We drove up the road and ate under some trees........................yes, they were pine trees.
On the way I confessed to the guys that I had severely scolded a parent for not bringing his children to clinic. It is the first time that I have done that and I felt bad about it...... but I felt worse for the children. Tomas and Manuel also had a confession.........they had heard me. They told me that they would have done the same thing.
We ate under the trees and enjoyed rice, beans, tortillas, salsa and orange juice.
The drive home was uneventful and we are thankful for that. When I arrived at Lisa and Kemmel's they told me that we have not had electricity since 10 am and are not sure when it will return. Hmmmmmm, it may be a night to read and sleep! Goodnight!
Monday, August 23, 2010
I went to Quiche yesterday and was suppose to meet Magda for dinner and then we were to go to worship together. When she was not at her house, I thought something odd was going on. She is always there when she expects me and because of her recent falls, I was nervous. I went on to the worship service and about 15 minutes before it was to end, I felt a tap on my shoulder and it was Magda sitting behind me!
Now this is a first for her and I am encouraged that she came on her own. We left together and I walked her home. I told her how concerned I was about her and she said her niece had come from The City and that it was not a good visit. I do not ask a lot of questions when it comes to family matters. I had a cup of coffee with her before I took a bus back to Chichi. As I said, I am encouraged that she came because this is a big step for her.
We had a busy clinic in Lemoa today with 23 medical patients and 3 for dental cleaning. When we left, the truck battery was dead so Manuel and I jumped off the truck.
Tomorrow will be a day to work on the educational material that will be presented to ABC families on nutrition. I am anxious to get it finished and be able to present it.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Note to Neva: The mothers loved the blankets! In fact, the babies came wrapped in them today :)
This is Marvin and he is looking good. He still has some swelling but is looking good. Well, he is looking great compared to 6 months ago. His mom is doing well and she said she will meet me next Sunday in Chichi for worship.
Sergio still has quite a bit of swelling but looks much better. His parents brought me about 25 pounds of apples! Now that is a one pleased mother!
Pedro Mauricio is also doing well. His dad brought him today since his mom is working in the house. His dad kept talking about what quality of surgery. Don't ya just love pleased parents?
Juan Martin was doing great. People were very complimentary of his parents during the surgical clinic. All of the parents took very good care of their children but Juan's parents had a special touch!
Cristofer as as active as he was at clinic!! He was all over the floor and jumping on the exam table as his mother and grandmother looked in the opposite direction!
All of the children looked great! It has only been two weeks since their surgery and it time, of course, they will look even better. The parents are excited and very thankful.
Those that will need to return for a palate repair will be scheduled for early February.While I was seeing the babies, Lisa took care of the ladies that needed paps done. I even squeezed in a plantar fascitis. No need to turn away patients.
After the babies and pap clinic, we had a surgical clinic. Lisa biopsied an area below a ladies eye and then she removed a skin tag on a ladies foot. It was a great day and I loved it!
I went home and started getting caught up on things......laundry, cleaning, just stuff........
Lisa called and said she had made some apple fritters and asked me to come over. Sure!
It was wonderful! We sat at the table with fresh coffee and HOT apple fritters and just moaned!! It started raining real hard so I had time to eat a SECOND one, with more coffee!
An adventurous day, exciting patients, HOT apple fritters, fun neighbors...........life is good :)
Friday, August 20, 2010
Maury and I stopped at the clinic to get some papers that Josefina needed. It starts out to be an easy story and then gets more involved. We needed to wait at the clinic until the office opened in The City. Maury eventually talked to three different people to get the information that she needed.
We go to the hospital to just turn in the papers but are told we need to wait in a line........a very long line. So we wait and then realize she needs some photo copies. The hospital does not have a photocopier so we need to walk about 5 blocks to a store that is opened.
The exciting part about the walk is that it is through what is now the fair grounds of Santa Cruz. It is a shortcut through a field. Yesterday this place was crowded and the noise was deafening. Now it is just us, the workers of the carnival, children looking for money that people lost while on the rides and the large amount of trash that has no yet been collected. With copies in hand, we return to the hospital.
Maury has no idea how much longer she will have to wait so I go on to La Estancia with Tomas.
I ask Tomas how his son is that is studying Bible in The City. He tells me, with a enormous grin, that he is doing well and that he is currently in San Salvador working on a project. I remembered when everyone was a little nervous because his son did not want to go to school nor did he know what he wanted to do. Tomas said to me today, "I was so afraid of losing my son......not studying or having a purpose.......not going to church anymore.......but he made the right decisions......thanks to God." What a thankful parent he is!
We eventually had 8 patients in La Estancia. One mother brought her child back. I thought maybe the medicine had not helped but she assured it had. This time the child was covered with an "allergy".....and it looks suspicious. It takes a while to get all of the information but I find that the father had it first, now the child has it and the grandparents had it last month. I tell her about the treatment and I can tell she is not excited. I realize it is a lot of work but the family will not get well if it is not done.
Back home for the evening..........clinic tomorrow in Lemoa with Lisa........
Thursday, August 19, 2010
We eventually had six patients for the day.
I received a call from Lisa saying that Josefina had been taken to surgery for her appendix and that she had done well. She was back in her room and that the visitation was as 4pm.
After we had seen all of the patients, I headed back home to do a few things and then went to the hospital top visit Josefina. Her mom and her sister-in-law were visiting. She was not feeling her best so I only stayed a few minutes. As I was leaving, two of her brothers came in........Lisa and Kemmel were right behind them.
The streets were packed and the noise was terrible. I wanted to walk around the fair for a few minutes but it was not worth it. I could not wait to get back out into the main street again.
Tomorrow, I will go with the guys to La Estancia.
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
We only had a few patients today but ones that I think we will be able to help.
I had told you about Victor about 6 weeks ago. He is a young boy that has seizures almost every day and hits people. In the last two weeks he has only had 3 seizures and has only has 3 episodes of hitting people. Both of these are improvements and I am very encouraged by it. Victor even seemed to have a little personality today. He talked a little bit and even had a few smiles.
We also had a patient with Bell's Palsy. The sad part of this story is that she had been to see someone who had given her 16 injections of vitamins telling her that this would cure it :(
I hope to also see her again in October.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
First, Gaspar told me that last week he had partial paralysis in his face. He told me that Lisa had given him a steroid injection and he felt much better. He said he still has some odd sensation in his ear that is getting better and he is thankful that Lisa helped him.
Next, Juan told me about him and Aura trying to get an ultrasound of their baby to be sure the position is alright. Long story short..........all is well! Juan should be able to hold his little boy in just a few short days :)
We are thankful that Gaspar, Aura and the baby are well. Sometimes, things do not work out this well and it can be very sad. Juan also told me about a 7-year old girl from Paxot II that died last week. He said that her stomach had been distended and the parents had taken her to a physician and then to another one trying to find some answers. One the way to the third one, the little girl collapsed and died.
When we arrived in Chutzurob, we had patients waiting and that is always exciting. As we were getting patients checked in, Juan asked me if one of these bills were false or real. Well, because of the way he asked the question, I knew it was a false bill. Can you tell which one is counterfeit and which one is a real bill? (The answer is below :)
So, we saw 14 medical patients in Chutzurob and Gaspar had one for dental cleaning.
A young man that had come a few months ago returned and I was glad to see him. I told him that I missed last month because he did not come to clinic. Anyway, he had begun to have seizures a few years ago after a bicycle accident and when he visited the first time, he told me that he was having 4-5 seizures a week. Since he has started the medicine, in two months he has had only one seizure! He and his mom are very thankful for the medicine.
This is the last patient of the day.
As soon as we finished the rain started! Juan asked for the keys because he wanted to get the truck up the hill before the rain started falling harder. I thought it was taking them quite a long time to return but had no idea why. When he and Gaspar came back he told me that he was not able to get the truck all the way up the hill because of the mud. He said he had tried 3 times but could not do it.
We finished packing the truck and then I backed it down the hill to get a good start. I told the guys that I like Chutzurob but I wanted to spend the night in my bed. They just laughed at me and I told them to hang on! We were going to the top of the hill!
We made it back to Chichi without any problems and we are thankful for that.
As always..........tomorrow, another day and another adventure!
PS. The counterfeit bill is the first one.
Monday, August 16, 2010
When I left home, I walked past the house where the lady asked me to visit her dad on Saturday night. There were several cars in front of the house next door but the way the houses are connected, I was not sure if it was the same house. One of his daughters came out to see me and told me that her dad died. She asked me if I would come in to visit.
Trying to be as respectful as I could, I removed my sunglasses, Ipod and put my Diet Coke in my backpack. I waited my turn and then stood a few minutes by the casket. When it was time to leave, I talked to the daughter for a few minutes outside. She told me that her dad had been comfortable and died yesterday about 6pm.
I hopped a bus to Santa Cruz and got my haircut. Then I went to visit Magda and she was feeling fairly well. She told me that Wednesday is a traditional day to eat tamales with your friends and asked me if I could return. I told her that I would not be able to on Wednesday but I could come back on Sunday before worship service in the afternoon. She said that would be fine and that she would go with me after we eat.
I had dinner with Lisa and Kemmel tonight. We started out by having cheesecake and coffee! Now, that is the way to start dinner! Then we had BBQ ribs and broccoli.........it was wonderful! Thank you, guys!
Tomorrow I will go to Chutzurob with Gaspar and Juan. It should be a great day!
Sunday, August 15, 2010
They have talked about many verses in Isaiah but this is a very well known passage.
For the 33 years that Christ lived, He knew what would eventually take place. He was fully aware of His death and He accepted it. Did He welcome it? No. He even asked his father that it be removed but I am sure He knew the answer because He was aware of the intense love that God has for man. His death was the only way to bridge man to God and it would be the ultimate sacrifice.
Christ practiced the utmost humility until His death. When He sat with his disciples and washed their feet, there was no impartiality. He washed everyone the same. His heart must have hurt when he approached Judas and Peter. He know that Judas would soon betray him and that later, Peter would deny him.
Later, I walked around Santa Cruz a little but there was not a lot going on. This is the week of the fair. Earlier in the morning there had been a parade but then the streets returned to normal.
When I got back to Chichi, I saw my shepherdess friend. I joke around with people and say I am slowly working myself into her circle to I can be a shepherdess one day. She told me that she had not seen me for awhile so I thought that was a positive sign..........next, she will be asking me to hang out with her and her sheep for the day!! We start our conversation in K'iche' and then I quickly change it over to Spanish.
I wanted to visit the neighbor man and his family again today but do not want to bother them. I will stop by the house tomorrow.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
This afternoon, Tomasita knocked on my door and asked if I would eat lunch with them. We sat on the porch and enjoyed grilled lamb, black beans, corn, fresh salsa and grilled tortillas. It was very nice of them to invite me.
This evening I walked to the little tienda for some Diet Cokes and there was a lady there that wanted to talk to me when I finished. She told me that her dad was very sick in the house and asked if I would go and see him. I had not seen this gentleman for a long time. When I first moved into the neighborhood, he would be out walking early in the morning or afternoon but now he is in bed and not doing well.
I talked with them and answered some questions they had and then we prayed for a minute. I do not think he will live very long and I know it is hard on the family. We will see.
It is good to be back in Chichi and I have enjoyed the time getting caught up.......I love cleaning, organizing and getting ready for the next adventures. Tomorrow, I will go to Santa Cruz and worship there and get photos made for all of the children. There is also a fair going on there so I may check that out.
Thanks for reading............................
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Victor returned with the van on time and all is well. He said the roads and bridges are ok so we plan to return the shorter way.
Sergio and his parents are ready to return. They have done great during the week and I am sure they are ready to be back home with the rest of the family.
One last photo of Sergio.
Pedro and his parents are also ready to return to Chichi.
One more photo of Pedro.
Marvin has been an excellent patient. His mom has taken good care of him and has matured since February. She has been much more attentive and it has been great to see this.
One more photo of Marvin before he leaves.
This is Juan Martin and his dad before we left the clinic.
Juan has done well after his surgery and I am sure his parents are looking forward to being back at home.
The follow-up clinic will be August 21st and I will keep you posted. Thank you to ASELSI for providing a van for transportation. Thank you to the Morganton Church of Christ, Danny, Frank and Evelyn, Rick and Sarah and Janie for sponsoring the children.
Matthew 15:40----The King will reply, "I tell you the truth, whatever you did for the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me."
Wednesday, August 11, 2010
Today Donelly was able to go home. His surgery was done on Monday and he looked good.
Juan Martin and his dad are passing the morning away. This is Juan's 2nd post-op day and he is doing great.
A little closer view of Juan Martin and his surgical line.
This is Marvin and his mom as they were walking around the clinic.
This is Marvin's 2nd day post-op day and he is also doing wonderful.
Pedro just had his surgery done yesterday and he is doing great.
His surgical line is great and he is doing well.
Rick's daughter, Julie Ann, is on this trip. I teased her about not coming to the highlands for the last two years due to cheerleading but I am glad she is on this trip.
Rick and his family sponsor a young lady, Ingred, in the ABC Program. She was at the clinic on Wednesday and I hung out with her and Julie Ann for awhile. We talked about fun things like what you like to do in your spare time, favorite foods, favorite colors, just lots of fun things. Now, you need to remember the cultural differences for some of the questions. Ingred asked Julie Ann how she bathed. She was asking if Julie Ann bathed in the river. Julie Ann handled the question well.
Julie Ann had on some bracelets that Ingred liked so Julie Ann gave Ingred her choice of one of the bracelets.
This is Sergio and he is also doing well. He is a little more swollen than the other babies but I have talked to his parents about this eventually returning to normal.
In the afternoon, there were no new patients so we started singing. Sergio's mom came to join Kathleen and I, as well as one of the cleaning ladies.
Goofing around a little between patients..............Angie and Jeni.
When the day came to a close..........the patients were all well and it was time to turn out the lights.
Sergio's mom resting at the bedside with Sergio.
Tomorrow, the babies and I will head back to Chichi. Dr. Dwayne will see the babies in the morning and discharge them. It will be nice to return to the cool highlands.
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
I want to go back and talk a little about Carmen and her mom. She was the little girl who had a small mass on her tongue and it was removed on Sunday. Neva, Karen and I spent some time with Carmen's mom when Carmen was taken back to surgery. She told us that she no longer went to church but was wanting to talk more about God and the Bible. We prayed with her and told her that later we would return that evening to talk with her.
That evening, Neva and I went back to talk with her and her story is the story of many, many people. When her little girl was very sick she, "looked for God and prayed." Then, when Carmen got better, she no longer attended worship. We talked about God wanting a relationship with her and this relationship should continue to grow.......in difficult times and in good times.
Neva explained that God loved Jesus as much as she loves Carmen and that Jesus died so we could have that relationship. God is faithful in good times and in difficult times.
This is Juan Martin the morning after his surgery. He is doing real well and so are his parents.
Within a few days the swelling will diminish and he will look even better! He is going to be handsome young man.
This is Pedro Maricio as Jenn takes him back for surgery. His mother was just as tearful as Pedro was.
Pedro's surgery was sponsored by Janie from Morganton, NC.
Within just a few hours, Pedro was resting quietly and his parents were also at peace.
OK, a little history on the next baby, Marvin. He came to clinic last February and at that time, he was a very sad baby. He had lost a lot of weight since we had seen him and was very sick. We really did not think he would live. We spent some time with the mother, wanting her to stay so we could help but she returned home. This photo is of Marvin in February.
Marvin returned, has gained weight and has grown! We are so excited.
Marvin's surgery is sponsored by Frank and Evelyn from Morganton, NC.
This is Marvin, just a few minutes after he came out of the operating room. Amazing!
This is Wilfred. He is another baby waiting for surgery.
These two patients have had their surgery and are doing great!
This baby won the hearts of many in the clinic. Unfortunately, they were not able to find a vein on the baby so surgery will be delayed until February 2011. The parents were very distraught so I was asked to talk to them. I explained that their baby would grow and that sometimes babies do need to wait, even though it is hard on the parents. I told them I would take a photo of them now and return in February with a copy for them so they could better see the progress. I eventually got a smile from them :)
We still do not have any water but we are not letting that stop us from working. A van did take several people in to Chicaco for a shower but I could survive another day........after that we had to be creative. Here Kathleen is demonstrating how we collected water in the afternoon when it rained so hard.
Another day, another adventure with many events. Please continue to pray for the patients, families, medical staff and the kitchen staff. The days have been long and some surgeries have been bumped until the next day. Even though my blog focuses on the surgeries of the babies, there are many other types of surgeries and procedures taking place.
We pray each night for each patient by name. We know God answers these prayers and that He will continue.
Monday, August 9, 2010
Here, you can see the current level of the river. The level of the river rose several feet and washed away the water lines of the clinic.
We did not think we would be able to do many surgeries but we we able to get enough water to keep the sterilization room going. Rick continued to rig up systems that allowed the ORs to continue.
This is Connie and Leslie as they are checking in a patient. It is their first time down and we hope that they will return.
This is Karen and she was a great help this week. She has limited Spanish skills but she did not let that stop her from getting the patients what they needed. Here she sits with Sergio and his parents before they were called back for surgery.
We prayed with Sergio's parents when Sergio was taken back. We gave them updates through the surgery.
After surgery, Karen got a frozen glove and let Sergio enjoy it. I am sure the ice felt good on his mouth.
Sergio's surgery is sponsored by the Morganton Church of Christ in Morganton, North Carolina.
This is Juan Martin after his surgery. He has big beautiful eyes.
Danny from Morganton, NC sponsored Juan Martin's surgery.
This lady is Sebastina and she had thyroid surgery. She was a delight, always wanting to pray and sing with us.
This is Cristofer before he went home. He has a baby brother staying in The City that is not enjoying his time there. Cristofer's parents asked to return home quickly so they could go and get their newly born child.
We functioned well today without water. We hope that tomorrow we will have it. But more important are the patients. Everyone has done well and we are very thankful for that.