Our first visit was a bit of a bust. The hospital didn't have that nice clean "western" feeling to it, but more importantly, I didn't like the doctor, or the policies that she was determined to follow, which left me with a complex, which is evidenced by the use, of so many, comas, in this sentence. Specifically, it is our desire that I remain with Bethany throughout the process. That's a pretty big no-no here. Filipina women are expected to labour alone, without the help of anyone but a nurse who is busy serving everyone else in the room (most labour rooms have about six beds in them).
I know that a generation ago, husbands weren't expected to be in the delivery room. They were supposed to hang out in the waiting room with their friends, trying to remain calm and not make an aspen of themselves (that was for you Uncle Zonno). But I'm apart of the next generation - we're naming our kid Promise - and I want to be with my wife.
Anyways, the doctor at the first hospital was kind, but seemed to implicate that we were nuts for trying to have our baby at home. And she wouldn't hear of me being with Bethany in either the labour room or the delivery room. I kept my cool, but I've got to tell you that I wanted to engage her in an endless maze of questions that would have shaken her to the core and stripped her of all the faulty logic that her belief system is built upon.
The second hospital was a big hit. It's a much newer facility, so it had that nice familiar "western" feel to it. Let me take this opportunity to say that I know we have chosen to have our baby in the developing world, and we can't expect things to be the same as back in Canada. Having said that, I want to make sure that Bethany has the most peaceful and stress free birth as possible, so we want to know which hospital is going to provide that for her.
Not only was this second hospital much cleaner and newer, but the doctor was great. She was warm and friendly, and she actually stated that she hoped that our birth could take place in our home instead of the hospital. Although this hospital had similar rules as the other, this doctor seemed to be much more flexible. She said that I could definitely be in the delivery room, and that she would try to allow me to be in the labour room as much as possible. We will continue to pray that the Lord will prepare the day of delivery so that everything goes smoothly, but I think we both feel pretty good now that we have a solid backup plan.
While Bethany and I were working on that stuff, Toti was busy delivering six filters to a very distant Butuan. Butuan is the city that Impact visited during the JOC in April. We have trained some men from Butuan and they wanted to have some filters right away because they're working in a village where people are dying from bad water. These first six filters will have an immediate impact on an entire village. My hope is that soon we will have a team building filters on their own in Butuan.
In other news that may or may not interest some of our readers: Bethany and I got the new Coldplay album a few days ago. I like it a lot, and you should too. Speaking of music, I pulled out an old Jethro Tull album last night and Bethany and I cuddled while listening to some silly 70's music. It was a precious moment of stillness in our otherwise busy lifestyle.
Also, I'm pretty excited this evening because I seem to have at least temporarily solved my photo sharpening problems. When my computer crashed in February, my copy of Photoshop went to hard drive heaven. I have spent countless hours trying to reinstall Photoshop since then, but to no avail. Today I downloaded some new trial software from Nikon, and I must say I'm feeling pretty good about it. It's not as good as Photoshop, but at least I can sharpen my photos again. What does this mean? Well, let me show you the difference. Observe this unsharpened portrait (click here). Now look at the sharpened version (click here).
Well, you may not be excited, but I am. I think a bit of sharpening makes all the difference. Anyways, that's life for us here in the Phils today. Thanks for reading and God bless. I leave you with some pictures from a recent filter delivery in a nearby Muslim community.
P.S. Did it bother you the way I kept spelling "labor" as "labour"? Well, I'm a Canadian, eh?
Sometimes the only way to get a good seat in the truck is to knock out a window.Toti and I found ourselves driving through a very dense banana forest.Sometimes one filter can provide a whole bunch of people with clean water.This filter became clogged, and Toti was crazy enough to try sucking out the obstruction.This rice field caught my attention last week.The baby's room is slowly but surely taking shape.