Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Clarity.

Greetings! And a happy new year to you all! Thanks for reading and being faithful to comment and encourage.

We were so blessed this week to receive a HUGE package from Tim's family packed with yummy chocolate, coffee, crafts, and toys for Promise. Thank you soooo much to Andy and Nicole, Mum and Dad, Jeff, Ben and Holly, and Joshua and Esther for making our Christmas closer to home! Promise has been ecstatically wheeling her new baby stroller around the house with pride. She is such a girl! However, often instead of a baby in her stroller, there is a plastic truck. :) She's balanced.

I have definitely entered the second trimester of this pregnancy....wow! What a change! I am feeling more clarity of mind, spirit and hit a new level of energy! And just in time, too! The end of December held the birth of a continuity, attendance to a Catholic baby dedication for a precious patient of mine (Tim and I are now the Godparents of EJ, a precious baby boy), and the end of consistent shift work at Mercy Maternity. While I am working one shift a week, I am spending most of my days visiting past patients, studying for my certification exam in February, and basking in the joy of getting to know my ever-changing daughter. No longer bound to my cell phone anticipating sleepless nights with patients in labor or the fear of not having someone to watch Promise while I boot to the clinic for copious baby checks.... *sigh*... I am beginning to understand normalcy again.
Here's May-May and her baby Kacer (my last birth for 2009)

However, I am still seeing patients and some tug at my heart more than I can express. This week, one of them gave birth.

I met Ate Jean when she was 28 weeks pregnant with her seventh child. I was scheduled for gram stains and she was on my list. After doing her gram stain, I found an STD and checked out her chart to find out that her husband is not a faithful man. Grieved and concerned, I took her as a continuity. She also had a UTI and was severely anemic. Severely. She explained to me that she wanted to leave her abusive husband, but was afraid of trying to support her 6 (almost 7) young children. She shared that her husband did not allow her much money from his income, but had just enough to provide food and school uniforms for her children...not enough for medication for her STD or iron supplements for her anemia. After a long conversation, Ate Jean, looking frail, tired and frustrated, agreed that she needed to take care of herself. I assured her that I would be along for the ride and would provide her with what she needed for her pregnancy.

After giving her meds and iron supplements, I scheduled her back every two weeks until she was term. The first two-week visit proved to be disappointing as the intensity of her anemia and her malnutrition caused her body to vomit her meds and supplements. Grr. We started over and I advised her to stick them in a banana after eating a full meal with added protein. After giving her eggs and making sure she was willing to try, we set another prenatal for two weeks.

The second two-week visit showed quite a difference! Her skin was no longer pale and her eyes were bright. She had gained almost 2 kilos and beemed with added energy...in just TWO WEEKS! :) She had finished her meds and was still able to stomach the iron supplements. And her body liked it...her hematocrit had gone from 26 (severely anemic) all the way to 30! (Normal in pregnancy is above 35). WAHOO! I gave more eggs and threw a little party in her prenatal cubicle. We had a good laugh, too. She shared that though things were not great with her husband at home, he had agreed to be treated for the STD, as well. Her UTI disappeared, too! She continued water therapy to ensure its complete departure and told me that she had been eating two eggs a day, just like I asked her to. You could tell she was doing incredibly well.

Each visit brought a new and improved Ate Jean. Beautiful, healthy and anticipating a healthy baby. I loved seeing her....and when she hit 40 weeks, her hematocrit was 35 and there were no traces of infection in her body. :)

The afternoon of January 4, I had just gone home from day shift and Tim left for some meetings when Ate Jean texted me, "Ma'am B, sakit ang tiyan. Daghang sipon, dugo." She was in labor and wanted to go to Mercy. Without having someone home for Promise, I had to send her to another midwife. I was grateful she got a good one. :) Abigail, a new midwife here at Mercy, had the privilege of delivering a precious and beautiful baby boy to Ate Jean, who ended up only have 6 hours total of labor and pushed for less than 20 minutes. :) She didn't hemorrhage, she didn't tear, she didn't need an IV. God is so good. The change in her is remarkable.

While I didn't get to be her midwife for the short time she was in the birth room, I was so grateful to be her midwife for the last couple months. That's why I love this job....not because of delivering babies. I really don't care too much about being the delivering midwife....but I love being a part of the process of positive change that will impact a whole generation. Ate Jean's son got off to a good start in life because his mother received prenatal care, took the advice of her midwives, and desired to bless her child despite her rough home life.

Clarity. So as I study for my certification exam interrupted by precious Promise wanting to nurse, play, sing, or eat, I remember the patients I've had over the passed 2 1/2 years whose situations seemed bleak at the beginning....and yet, after care and sincere concern, have healthy babies and continue to thrive.

I think that's all I have to say today. I am almost 15 weeks preggo now and I am looking forward to the next few weeks of changes...some women begin to feel their baby move around 16 weeks and soon I will be able to listen to the baby's heartbeat with my fetascope instead of a doppler. :) My tummy is getting a bit big now and my pants are not fitting so well, but because Promise still insists on breastfeeding, my tummy is getting bigger and my bum is getting smaller! :) My pants sag only in the butt. However, I really want to wean her now. Please be praying for that transition...she is not doing very well as she is teething (the molars are coming) and is quite grumpy. Thanks!
Here are some pics of the mass baby dedication we attended Dec. 27th for EJ and his parents, Lenita and Rex. :)
Here's the church...beautiful...and can you believe they sell balloons in the shape of Dora and Hello Kitty for the kids...and they bring them inside!!? Ha ha ha! Promise saw the Dora one and exclaimed, "BACKPACK!"
Here's Lenita and baby EJ playing with Promise's Dora....apparently, she isn't the only Dora-lover! And above is the whole God-parent gang, Lenita and Rex's family. We were honored to be a part of the crowd!
And last, here is the priest blessing baby EJ....notice the mass-quantities of people in the background waiting for their blessing, too! It was quite the event!

Be blessed.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Wow! So happy for you and the event looked so impressive! Give that baby Promise hugs from grandma Con.

Christina said...

Thanks for being such a significant part of the rescue mission, Bethany. How much God has done in you and through you in these last few years. The future is bright! Missing you. Love, Mum

~*Beth Butler*~ said...

Yay I am so glad you are getting over that 1st trimester hump! I loved seeing the pic of May-May! I remember her. She was SO sweet. Dude I can't wait to see you in February and give you a little break from studying ;o)

xoxo

Heather said...

Wow, B, what an amazing testimony of how God is touching lives through you and your faithfulness and obedience. You never fail to touch lives around you with the love of Jesus. You are a major blessing.

Love you,
Heather

Anonymous said...

I love you, Bethany!

Aunt Sylv