I have created this blog for anyone that wants regular updates about my time here in Malawi. I am currently volunteering my time to the Ministry of Hope Crisis Nursery and Orphan Feeding Centers. I am a Neonatal Intensive Care nurse helping to care for the orphaned, abandoned and ill babies of Malawi. I will try to post updates as often as I can. I thank you all for your support and prayers. Please send them to the babies, children, and people of Africa too. I hope in the pictures you are able to get a small idea of what life is like here for me, but mainly the people of Malawi.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Today as I woke early in preparation to participate in the Mobile Medical Clinic Ministry of Hope launched earlier this year I had no idea my day would go in such an opposite direction. The Mobile Medical Clinic goes into the villages and provides basic medical care to the people who would otherwise not have access. I was teasing them about wanting me to go along. I told them that I had no idea what to do with an adult, I just know babies. I was interested to see what it was all about. So, in true Africa fashion, things did not happen at my American pace. As I was waiting around (over an hour and a half) at the office to leave we received a call to rescue a baby from a village about an hour away. The nursery had reached its capacity so they were not accepting new babies. I however could not handle the thought of this baby not getting care. So I took matters into my own hands and made a deal with the administrator that I would go get her, take her home with me for a couple nights and ensure that she was "safe and healthy" to be amongst the general population at the nursery. I was told that she was 3 months old and her mother had died quite a while ago and the baby was deteriorating. So needless to say I aborted the Mobile Medical Clinic and in no time I was bouncing down a dirt road on my way to get this baby.
When I arrived the whole village gathered and I explained what was going to happen and how long baby Elimati "Ella" my nickname for her, would be cared for. From asking several questions, what I could determine is that the mother probably passed away from anemia. She was 31 but the father looked very young. Ella will return to the village when she is old enough to take solids. They had been giving her cow's milk for 3 days. She looked healthy and well taken care of, not deteriorating like I had once thought. As I was speaking with the people of the village, Ella was on my lap and smiling so big at the sound of my voice. It was so sweet. So she spent a few nights with me and I must say she is a pretty easy baby. It was a piece of cake. The next day I had some errands to run in town so I strapped her on my front in my African sling, drove a stick shift and balanced a bottle in her mouth while I drove. ONLY IN AFRICA!!!! I kept thinking if only people could see me now. I guess Ella is officially added to my list of babies I have fallen in love with.