i couldn't think of a creative title for this post, which is why it sounds so anticlimatic, however the past few days have been anything but that! yesterday i continued to work at the local dispensary...wait, but back up before i get into that let me tell you about a little story that involves a directionally challenged girl (me). so the other morning i woke up to go for a run on the beach. family and friends who dearly love me, before grabbing the telephone to call and warn me about how unsafe this is and start to worry, don't panic! there are resorts surrounding us with plenty of mzungu (white people) walking the beach and you know you can't keep this spirit fenced in! i have great instincts to warn me when i am not safe :) as i began my run i was too fixated on my ipod and which song was playing to pay attention to my surroundings, thus as i was finishing my run, the beach began to look all the same and i could no longer find the opening to my home. mom, i know your palms are sweaty right now and probably many others. this is a God story. i wasn't panicking, i knew i was okay, i was safe i just needed to find my way home. well, my answer came in the form of the nicest man who walked me along the beach with his dog back home safely. his name was benton and i have him to thank for sending me on my way home. we talked about america and kenya and it was a sweet surprise sent from above.
so, after i got back safe and sound, i went to the dispensary. i hesitate before even telling this story, but i feel it impacted my life in such a monumental way that i have to share. i hesitate because i understand the sensitivity of the subject, and i by no means want to use this blog in any offensive way. a young woman yesterday came in due to abdominal cramping, after 4 months of being pregnant...she had miscarried. i am going to stop there in terms of details, for i feel like sharing any more of this portion would be disrespectful to her and her right to such a private and devastating experience. i could not communicate with her (she only spoke swahili), i saw her tears and i shared my own. i prayed over her, i asked for words and all that i knew to say was "gina lango kelly, gina lango pole". meaning i am kelly, i am sorry-these few words for such a large moment. as the nurse was finishing, i began to help and i washed and massaged her feet. it reminded me of how Jesus washed the disciples feet. for me, this was an act of the least. it was all i knew to do-instead of my words offering comfort, my hands tried. for Jesus it was a reminder that no one should ever think himself higher than he ought to, that we are never above even the most lowly service. this was my humble service to this woman who had just lost something so precious, so dear to her. i will never forget this.
after this experience, i excused myself and took a few moments, and then i began helping my friend kessy with charting the diseases and conditions of their patient population. betty, the sweet lady training to be a nurse, told me that i needed an african boyfriend to use when i come to visit again. kessy spelled our names on a paper: kessy and kelly and told me, "see, even God knew!" my favorite thing is laughing with the people here, and they do so much of it, and they do it well! i brought my bag of trail mix to share with the staff since they are not able to afford such items of luxury due to the average person earning 100Ksh (about $1)/day. you should have seen their faces when they reached in and asked, "what is this from, what is this called" and then as they hesitatingly put it in their mouth to try and then smiled after. i even had one peanut butter m&m left (from where i had picked them out on the airplane ride) that i shared with a boy, kelvin, and his eyes lit up like he had just seen a movie star. they were all so grateful. it is the least i can do for the kindness i have received since beginning volunteering there. i am always the first to be given a seat, or to be offered chai in the break room.
today i was a part of my third delivery. still just as amazing as the first and i am learning the hang of when the nurse needs what and how to assist and then assume my role when the umbilical cord is cut and i can take over with the newborn care (my favorite part). i assisted the woman during her laboring all the way up until she delivered which was nice to be a part of. the nurse, evans, told me that i could take over the maternity ward now, i laughed and told him to give me a few more days!
thank you all for your comments, i love reading how my words have made you felt. i miss you all, keep writing and thinking of me!