Saturday, July 25, 2009

Hot. Heat. Sun. Sweat. Gross.

It's hot here. Can't believe how hot actually! There is nothing like suddenly realizing sweat is running, not dripping cuz it skipped that step, but running in rivlets down your legs. If you ever need to be reminded what it used to feel like when you peed your pants as a kid, come on down and join the fun! Even the Haitians are complaining about it. It's somewhat incredible actually! The saving grace is that we have had pretty steady electricity through most if it, and there are plenty of fans and one very lovely air conditioned room to escape to once in a while. However, that being said, leaving one of those places of refuge requires a person to venture out and for the umpteenth time feel that same feeling when a big truck goes flying by you on a hot day, and you have to absorb the heat of the air and the exhaust all while gasping for air through the dust. Yep, it's just lovely!

Besides the heat, things have been going quite well. We have been blessed with a couple cooler evenings, and that really makes things much better! The kids are doing well, though we have had to deal with the diarrhea that comes with the heat, and then runny noses and fevers here and there. But for the most part, they are doing quite well!

I didn't write about this yet, but the two babies that I wrote about 2 or 3 posts ago both died within a week of each other. They both had severe complications due to perferated bowels, and they were jsut too weak to make it through. It was a lot deal with, as at that same time I found out that my dad had passed away as well. My parents divorced when I was about 12, and I have not had much at all of a relationship with my dad for the last 15 years, so it was a difficult experience, trying to deal with and absorb all of that while being here in Haiti. Spent lots of time thinking and praying and deciding what to do as far as attending the funeral. It's very wonderful to have a great mom who spent lots of time talking with me and supporting me as we decided what to do in that regard. I ended up deciding to stay, and I am thankful that I feel peaceful since that decision was made, both before and after the funeral.

Two new children have come our way this last week or so. One is a brand new baby girl named Claudia, whose mom died very unexpectedly during childbirth. Her family did not know what to do as they were in such shock and asked us to take care of her for a week. They came back at the end of that week and asked if we would keep her as they did not have a way to care for her. So, we have a very cute chubby little baby girl who has joined the ranks in this house very heavy on the boy side! As well, this week Lori and Licia up at Zach's Clinic in Cazale called and asked if we would be willing to take over the care for a little baby boy named Loner. Terrible name huh?!?! He's 2 months old(though Melinda and I are sure he's older cuz he's so aware) and all of about 4lbs. He'd been at Zach's for about a month and a half, and they are so full there and he needs so much special care, and he would just not put on any weight. So, Loner came down and joined us here for the time being. He's very weak, and Pat and Melinda took him to see a doc who is quite sure that he has whooping cough, so this little man could sure use your prayers!

Speaking of Loner, he needs to be fed. So, this post stops here! More to come soon!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Pajama Picture Shoot












Wednesday, July 8, 2009

A few new things

Took the kids to the new town square for an outing. They were busy looking and being looked at by the other kids there, most of whom were selling some form of something or other. We bought some chips and juice and visited with them. Then I had a small heart attack when I realized that two kids who didn't go with Sadrack and some boys who had to pee, decided they wanted to go, and ran across the street by themselves to join them! They have a very basic(aka small and minute) understanding of traffic safety, and are used to always having someone directing them and looking out for them. I caused a bit of a scene as I jumped and ran to the edge of the park and then barrelled across the road after them! Thoughts of Needless to say, we had a little lesson that afternoon about being safe and asking permission to go anywhere, even if you see someone else doing something you want to do as well!

This is Mike, the son of our cement worker, Boss Doudou(ok, you can stop laughing at his name now!) In Haiti, all significant events(graduations, weddings, etc) have a godmother and godfather for the event. I was asked to be the godmother for Mike's kindergarten graduation. It was a long, long event, but an interersting array of old and new culture mixed together...and a LOT of people squashed into what was, when the event started, an airconditioned room. At one point a fellow we were sitting with got up to take some pictures and this lady and her friend squeezed themselves down the small aisle in between chairs and took his chair. So, when he came back everyone had to shuffle their buns and get cozy. Just another day in Haiti!

Here is the family and godfather and me. It was really funny as the two girls on each end were arguing over who got to stand by the "blanc"(aka me). I think every picture we took outside has a shoulder or hand or something that got in the way as people just continue on Haitian style and barrel their way through!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Catch up!

Ok, so i don't know that to start with as it's been so long, so here goes. I am thinking that this list is going to be random and such, but hopefully will give you an idea of where things are at!

-Thym's wedding went well from all I heard from Pat and Melinda. Lots of jokes made about needing to come back to Haiti to get a rest!

-we have had a number of sick kids coming through the doors...a set of month old twin boys...were here for a while, one went home, the other stayed not doing too great at he's fine and headed home soon. thank you Jesus!

-new baby girl came in yesterday...not sure of all the details of her history yet....mostly just shell shocked as we know her dad is 60 and her mom was 21!

-Carlos, Samuel and richard are all walking, along with Ester and Aneve

-Carlos refuses to hold his cup for himself, but this morning the little imp stole a cup Odette was using to feed Bertho and plopped on the floor and proceeded to drink from it by himself! Things like that are a big deal in this house!!

-we moved the 10 babies up to the classroom. They are getting too big and starting to walk and crawl more and they needed more room! They are so happy!

-RoseLissa is doing great. She got her casts off about 3 weeks ago and is now getting used to things again. She was really fragile for a couple weeks and her feet were really sensitive. Now she is starting to try and stand though, and use her legs more normally. She still has problems with her knees, but it will take some time to see how much they will correct on her own

-Speaking of RoseLissa, about a week and a half ago, we went to Port to get groceries and go find the place that the doc. in Port had referred us to. Two hours later, after her dad Sadrack had gotten in and out of the truck probably 30 times(this is how it goes in haiti when you need to find a get out and ask and get this or that pointed out and then jump back in and go until you don't know where to go again and jump out and...well you get the picture) he came back to the truck and said that he thought he had found the place. However, something about how he said it made me wonder what in the world he had found. Much to my chagrin, we squeezed into this horribly smelly, tiny little 20x20' room, full of leather, shoes in various stages of making, a tiny little old man and a rather large and volomptuous(spelling?) lady who did not have the most flattering aroma. I knew were were experiencing OIH(only in Haiti). Our "wonderful" doc had referred us to a place that he himself had never been, only knowing of it as someone had dropped some paper off with some very general information he had not bothered to follow up on. Sadrack could only say(though too polite to say it in front of the tiny man big lady), "the shoe place in Mirebalais is nicer than this one, not to mention we didn't want a shoe place anyway!"
We got back in the truck and burst into laughter. It was all we could do really. All that time driving around the streets of Port and to find that delightful place. Next thing to do is to try getting into St. Vincent's hospital and get what we really need...hopefully!

-the bridge has been going out on a regular basis. Every time it rains, it washes away the temporary fix they have made with rocks and dirt, and they start again. This bridge is the temporary one they made after the hurricane last fall. It's not holding up so well, and hurricane season just started! There have been some adventures walking across a little piece of the bridge that is not broken, about the width of a baby formula can! I have enough of a time keeping my balance, and have huge respect for the steady stream of people crossing with a 5 gallon jug of water or a basin full of this or that balanced on their heads!

-the impetgo and such seems to be mostly cleared up. Seems like there are a couple kids who are just hanging on to their infections, but it's much better!

Ok. need to stop as there is a lady here who I promised to give a picture of her nephew. Will write more soon!

Late email post

Wrote this email a few weeks ago...for all of you who are not on my email list, here you go. For those of you who were really hoping this was a new blog, I am in the midst of doing that too!

Hello all! Just wanted to drop you a line and let you know how things are! It's quite insane running the house by myself for a week! Definitely looking forward to pat and Melinda getting back on Monday!I am trying to deal with an impetego infestation:there are 18 kids with some amount. The ladies have been really great about bathing them all with permagamate(this herbal purple stuff that is an awesome infection fighter) and I've been dousing them with polysporin. Looking better already...this made day 3 of that regime. Takes about an hour each time. morning and night.We'll keep on trucking! I've been feeling a little bit like a chicken with its head cut off. So much to do. Had a baby come in Monday morning, breathing like an 80 year old smoker...thankfullly we had oxygen. That took up a few hours today, then we sent her to the hospital, then our own kids sick with this and that along with fevers, and then community kids coming in with high fevers.I had been busy trying to get the new girls organized and familiar with things....hard to do when I am running in 300 directions, but I am so glad they came. However, since they came, one girl just can't seem to handle things, so they left to go to the CAM mission where it is much quieter and a little more comfortable for a few days. Hope to see them again soon. In the meantime, I have to cook suppers too, but that's not been so bad as we kinda established a menu, or at least some simple meal ideas, a few months ago, and it's easy for me to get what I need for the most part. Thankfully the kids are not picky! Makes me really appreciate our volunteers who come and take care of evening meals for us! Madam Cedieu, one of our workers, came home from the hospital Saturday a week after her mastectomy. walked here by HERSELF from her house, abuot 5 minutes, in the heat, to ask me to change the dressing. I chastised her a little bit for not just sending one of her kids after me...told her I was more than happy to make house calls. Oh yeah, that's what else I did tonight after the kids were in bed. She seems to be healing well except for that a few of her stitches have come loose and she is going to need them redone sooner than later. It's been quite the learning experience caring for her and I know that God has given me the strength to tend her wounds encourage her, despite the fact that I feel so inadequate. There have been a few kids coming each day with fevers, diarrhea...definitely a bunch of likely malaria too! A girl who was about 10, her mom didn't know exactly when she was born(this is really common in Haiti) came with the side of her head covered in sores and a terrible ear infection. She was really brave and not too scared of me, and so I managed to get her cleaned up quite well, sent some meds home with her mom, and told them to come back so I can clean it again and see how things look. So, what can I say, I'm busy! I have been managing to get some good sleep though, so for the most part it has not been too bad. Lots of help to be had when I need it, so that does make the load lighter...the hard part is takes time also to get people to do what you need them to do! One more story:Had a lady come yesterday...she walked what later took us at least half an hour to drive in the truck, starting at 3am in the morning. She came because she is 9 months pregnant and she has 4 other kids, and is a widow. She cried and cried asking for help, as she has seen her kids become sickly since she has no one to provide for them. We got her some food and milk for her kids, and attempted to take her home. We got near her house, but then could not pass due to the mud, and we had to get the truck back to pick people up that were coming in. So she walked the rest of the way home. We wanted her to stay at the orphange, but there was no one to stay with her other kids. Late this morning she called to let us know that she had given birth to a little boy at 7am this morning. I had a hard time dealing with feeling so helpless in this country....there are so many people who need help and there is only so many we can help. It was really hard for me to realize so blatantly yesterday that she is just one of so many women who are so desperate. Had to walk away and collect myself before we talked with her more. Next week once Pat and Melinda are back we will see what else we can do for them. I feel so blessed to be able to care for the kids in our home here, and that God has seen fit to provide for us, and in turn allow us to bless those around us! However,it's great to be back! The kids are all so big and so many of the toddlers suddenly have so much to say! They are so funny! I feel like I haven't gotten to spend enought time with them yet, as there is always someone calling me away to do something, but that time will come! The older kids have been grilling me about who and what I saw in Canada and ask to see the same pictures everday! Please keep me in your prayers as I do feel tired, especially at this time of the day, but really wanted to share all that has been going on thus far! I will be blogging...just not this week!Talk to you soon