Thursday, March 21, 2013


I should apologize right off the bat for not posting on my blog sooner.  Time flies and before I knew it, too long of a period has passed since I have brought my fingers to the keyboard and shared with you all about life here in Uganda.  Life here is GOOD.... no, it is richly good.   Where to start?  ( c :  That is the question.  Let me start by introducing you to Uncle Ronald and Auntie Rebekah and their little guy Frank.  Frank just officially joined the family.... though one could argue (and correctly so) that he was part of the family before he made his Debut last week.  Having just returned from Dubai (a story for another paragraph), I was able to eat dinner, catch up with my roommates, and plan an evening of unpacking, journaling, and preparing for the week... when the phone rang.  Auntie Rebekah was in labor.  Both Uncle Ronald and Auntie Rebekah had requested my presence at the birth of their child.  In a culture where pregnancy is not celebrated, I, along with others from the "west" had rocked the unspoken rule and found any and every opportunity to celebrate the impending arrival of their child.  Each morning I would greet auntie Rebekah and her hidden baby.  I would measure her belly and even found the heartbeat of her baby with a stethoscope (all the way praying that this was in fact possible).  We even came up with a song and greeted the soon to be parents each morning with "Soon and very soon... You are going to be a momma... soon and very soon... you are going to be a paapaa"  And so when the time came for the little baby to come, there was a natural coming together of a hodge podge family ready to greet the arrival of a little one.  And it was definitely an experience. In the labor ward, there are almost no drugs, bedsheets, or privacy.  There is a plastic mattress covered by a patient supplied plastic sheet, flimsy curtains to separate the undetermined number of women actively laboring, and an unspoken rule that men were best not be present in the process.  And Rebekah was a trooper.  And her husband was a trooper.  Taunted and publicly discouraged from entering, Ronald pushed past the doors and stood by the side of his wife.  He went further than that.  He held her and spoke sweet words to her.  And the medical staff stared.  We read scriptures, rubbed her back, and anticipated what the next minutes and/or hours would hold.  A quick check and an almost immediate encouragement to push.  And within a handful of intense pushes, a baby was born.  He was immediately placed on to her chest.  There was minimal movement.  And time slowed down.  Coming in as a friend, in that moment, the nurse in me erupted.  Grabbing the little baby, I started stimulating him.  And though there was a spark of a fight in him, the spark struggled to ignite into a flame.  He remained flaccid.  Another pair of hands grabbed him and he was wisked to an incubator several feet away.  And we watched as they began ambu bagging him and slapping him.  And I mean slapping him.... all over.  I cringed knowing that it was inevitably hurting him and yet, at some level, necessary. Michael and I stepped out of the room and began praying.  And shortly after we lifted our heads from praying, we heard the weak, yet audible, cry of this little guy.  God, the ultimate physician, breathed life into this little baby boy.  And after spending about six days in the intensive care unit, he came home.  

And this very afternoon, I went over to Uncle Ronald and Auntie Rebekah's house and saw little Frank.  Alert as ever, he just watched us.  His mind is healthy and he is adorable.  Please pray for his little legs, his left one in particular, that it would strengthen and that the muscles would relax.  

 And there is so much more to share...
There have been sweet times with my family group.  Time to slash (using a machete like tool to literally slash all the overgrowth/weeds) with them, eat with them, and just do life.  It has been neat getting to know them more and more.  We (aunties and girls) have started a bible study together and we will meet weekly.  I am excited at this opportunity of just being able to pour into them and watching them know their God more and more.  

I have been working in the clinic three afternoons a week.  I have really enjoyed loving on the children and taking care of all of their needs.  Whether it is cleaning a wound or talking with a teenager and helping her with a personal problem.  Each is a gift.  An opportunity to love and care.  There is a young child Patrick, whose eye hurts and he sees triple.  He needs to have his eyes checked and to be treated by an eye doctor.  Taking his hands into mine, we prayed and asked Jesus to bring a doctor.  And I am excited to see how God will grow His faith through the process of waiting.  There is another young girl who has serious fungal infections in her toes.  When asked if she had other shoes to wear... ones that were bigger... her eyes dropped down.  She doesn't.  Giving her medicine to start the fungal battle, I am trusting that God will take care of her needs and to see her faith strengthened as well.  It's on my agenda to pick her up a pair of shoes this weekend.  I wish I had pictures of these children.  I need to bring my camara to the clinic and start snapping pictures.  I would love to introduce them to you and I apologize that I haven't snapped more.  

My heart.  A couple of weeks ago, I wrote on Facebook that I sensed that soon, my soul would spill forth and my fingers would find the keyboard and I would write away.  I definitely sense it coming.  It just hasn't yet.  My soul is doing well and I am thankful for that.  And even through the smoothness of the transition here, there is stretching and growing.  The enemy fights.  My days are very full and there are countless opportunities to interact with those around me.  I have understood in sweet ways just how much God is meeting me and meeting my every need.  And I want to say more about that.  Because... it HAS been sweet.  Just not yet.  ( c :  

I'll leave you tonight with some fun pictures of me and the chicken.  No, I did not kill this chicken...but I will say that when Wilbur delivered the chicken in the bag and I opened it up for a cautious inspection... I was not too sure how to proceed. The chicken was still warm, his body flopped all over, and there were hairs still on him.  

I am so thankful to each one of you as you journey with me on this journey. And I am so thankful that God has blessed me with this gift of being here.  Truly. Truly.