A couple of weeks ago I saw the midwife at the hospital where I will probably deliver and all was well, and she told me to come back on a Monday to see the OB who would be doing ultrasounds. There are no doctors that actually work at the hospital, only midwives, and so Monday is the day to see the doctor on call and have an ultrasound done. So last Monday at 3 o'clock, I drove off to the hospital excited to (maybe) find out what we were having. Now Wayne loves to quote to me something from one of his professors at seminary "If you set your goals low enough, you'll always achieve them," and we have found that to be true in our time here! Things just take a while. So I was planning going to the hospital, and I told Wayne that I may be back in 2 hours, maybe 4. Hopefully I had the time and day right (I'd gotten that lost in translation too before!)
So I arrived at 3, and was told immediately by the man at the reception desk, "Oh no, you need to come back Wednesday." Oh no! So I called the nice midwife who had given me her cell number, and she said "No, tell him I said to come today." So I thought "Ok, crisis averted, I will find out today!" Little did I know that my goals were still set to high.
Fast forward to 7:45 pm. At least 2 babies had been born that afternoon, while a dozen pregnant women sat on hard benches in an unairconditioned hospital waiting to see the doctor. After almost 5 hours of waiting, a midwife came out and handed me my little piece of paper and said "The doctor has too many sick patients to see, you'll have to come back next week." Now I wasn't too upset at that (at least I wasn't crying yet). I am only paying $18 for this ultrasound, and at least the doctor was there for the women who really needed him, but it was a little disappointing, and boy was I hot and tired. So I drove home, and just as I'm about to put my dinner in the microwave to heat it up, the power goes off. This is a normal occurence here, but it was the last straw for me. I was hot, tired, sore, hungry, and disappointed. Thankfully my wonderful husband took good care of me that night as I laid in misery in front of our fan in our dark bedroom.
So, Monday again, back to the hospital again. I was dreading it a bit all day, not sure I could do another 5 hours and have nothing to show for it again. But as soon as I arrived, the man at the reception desk saw me and said "The doctor called and he will be here in 1/2 hour he said." It reassured me a bit, although I knew it wouldn't be 1/2 hour. As I was waiting again on the hard bench in the hot, humid hallway, 2 midwives passed me and said "Oh, you're back. The doctor will be here in 1/2 hour." So that got me hoping that something would happen today. As it turns out, I only had to wait 4 hours today (and you thought reading this blog was taking a long time), and then I got to see...our little boy!!!!
As much as it was a difficult couple of days, I am very thankful for several things in all this.
I am thankful for a healthy baby boy, who already looks to be pretty big!
I am thankful that there is a hospital close to us with good doctors and midwives.
I am thankful for my husband who takes great care of Addie while I am at the doctor and great care of me afterwards.
I am thankful (and trying to become more thankful all the time) for the opportunity that God has given me to see what life is like for the people here in Senegal. $18 for an ultrasound seems like nothing to me, but for some people, it is a lot of money. The hospital is one of the cheapest in the city because it wants to be more available to the people, but that is still a lot of money. It is good for me to sit alongside these women in the heat and humidity and catch just a glimpse of what life is like on a daily basis for them, much harder than my life.