Wednesday, February 24, 2016

This is Beautiful

This will be a Blog of Duality.
I will tell the story of today in a non-medical way, and then, since I happen to have a lot of OB/ Nurse/Midwife friends, a more technical way..  Please read whichever version suits you, neither, or both.  IT WAS A VERY FULL DAY.

Non-Medical Version:
Today was a terible and wonderful morning at St Therese Hospital.  Despite the tough conditions, I keep seeing progress.  I took a photo of the medication/midwife office and sleeproom, intending to label it "This is Beautiful".  Some would see banged-up antique cabinets and a rusty bed.  BUT It is clean, organized, (more all the time!) and has the medicines available to save lives, and even small lockers for all the midwives' purses.  6 Years ago I would have fainted in delight to have this tidiness and functionality.  Today I didn't faint, I just felt happy, and went into L&D.  A quiet morning turned into a busy one.  I worked with 2 new student-midwives.  We admitted and delivered a lady in premature labor.  Mama was in labor with  a 7 month pregnancy that turned out to be  (surprise!) twins, a girl,who survived, now in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit,  and a boy who never took a breath on his own.  This was a huge morning of learning for my students.  While part of it feels so sad, I am proud and grateful that really good care and kindness was given in a bad situation.

Medical Version, copied from an email to an OB GYN friend of mine:
   This am, I spent 2 hrs at St Therese.  With 2 students, I delivered unexpected 28-30 wk twins.  A, girl, cephalic, followed by surprise baby B, boy, breech.  She was resuscitated ok and is in NICU, he never breathed on his own and mom never held him.  But Alice, this sounds horrendous, yet I can tell you so many good things.

The students were great.  They took vital signs and started the IV properly.
In spite of unskilled brand-new hands (each had 1 prior delivery), they knew what they were doing.  They got terrific learning through this case.  ( And I did a good job teaching them !! )
The med room was clean and full of meds and supplies.  The birth kits are all together and available.
We had all the clean things we needed for the birth and resuscitation-- including a NICU doc!
The boy who died was dressed and treated respectfully.  As is typical, Mom would not hold him nor name him, but she did see him.
The place still looks yucky; the water still barely runs in the sink, and blood and fluids do pool on the floor during the deliveries, and those tables are horrific.  BUT.  So much progress since my first crazy delivery there in 2009.  Things are much better.  We need to keep going, and keep circling in prayer the desires and dreams that God put on our hearts.

Bon Nuit from Haiti!


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