Thursday, April 05, 2007

Travel Journal: 3-14-07

What a day. [Didn't yesterday's journal start with that sentence?] First of all, I just spent 30 minutes at the internet cafe writing a HUGE email only to have it "not respond" when I pushed sent. I wanted to cry but kept a stiff upper lip as I walked out (my time was up). Anyway...

Got up this morning at 5am, ready to leave by 6 from Ho Hoe, as planned. Knocked on Edward's door and woke him up at 6:20 (so not like him not to be prompt). Then we had to eat breakfast (I was ready to skip but Edward thought we should eat--he was right--next time I ate was at 4pm). Then there was a surprise (to me) stop at Eugemot that lasted 45 minutes and sent Bright crazy when we left (but was a good visit).

We were getting ready to leave Eugemot when Bright's birth father and 4 year old brother Wise walked up! I was able to get pictures and convey my thoughts to him. He gave his blessing. He also asked right in front of me if Mama E would please take Wise into the home. She refused because he runs away. Poor baby--having to hear his father try to relinquish him, and not for the first time. =-(
We left the orphanage at 8:30am (so much for getting to Accra by 10) but made great time and we were at the hospital for lab work by 12:30.

The hospital--probably my most frustrating experience so far! Bright cried constantly the 3 hours we were there--CONSTANTLY! Everybody is SO concerned here when they hear a baby crying. They kept asking what was wrong with the baby...why don't I try X or Y and he will stop. My one consolation was that the one time a Ghanaian woman took...him from me Bright kept crying! Take that Ghanaian woman! Ha! He's so confused now that he doesn't want ANYBODY! [read sarcasm]

So we go to the lab and they say we have to give a stool sample...well, not us...but Bright...before they will take Bright's blood. We went outside and shook Bright for 2 hours hoping for a stool. No luck. After 2 hours of listening to him scream they came out and told us that we could bring the stool tomorrow. Guess the crying was good for something! LOL!

After finally getting the blood taken we waited another 45 minutes for the results. We go back to see the doctor tomorrow at 2pm but from the lab results I can already tell Bright is still anemic (but not as bad). I wonder if a blood transfusion is in our future? Bright's congestion really bothers me--worries me.

We got "home" at 4pm and Lawrencia (Paul's wife) had made me a HUGE and delicious meal! This meal could seriously feed Eric and I with leftovers (and we are not light eaters). SO good!

*POST TRIP NOTE: This was NOT the meal she fed me that day. This is the "sized down" meal size she gave me the rest of the time (after I requested it)!

Bright loves it here--I think it feels like Eugemot to him and of course everybody loves him and wants to hold him. This afternoon I was just too exhausted to deal with it and let Bright be happy with them instead of miserable with me. The highlight of my day was when Paul was holding Bright and said, "Who is Mommy?" Bright looked up and turned his head to me before burying it in Paul's shoulder as if to say, "It's THAT white lady, but please save me from her!" At least he knows I'm the mommy.
Lawrencia and Paul are very into making sure I learn about the way they do things here (I love that). Tonight Lawrencia showed me the way Ghana mommies give their little ones baths. She gave the bath to Bright.

I'm doing all of the attachment stuff wrong but there are only so many times in a day that I can turn down somone's well-meaning gestures for the sake of attachment. They don't "get" attachment here. What they get is crying baby and a mommy who looks like she is exhausted and could use some help. I am. I could. I just shouldn't. I wish I could do better by Bright. I wish I knew how to handle him just like he's used to, but I can't. I have to believe that he and I are going to find a rhythm at some point. We just have to, don't we?
*POST TRIP NOTE: A big factor in Bright and I eventually finding our rhythm was watching how Lawrencia and other Ghanaian moms mother their babies. It's very different from the US. As soon as I started washing and carrying and interacting with Bright like other Ghanaian moms do with their babies, he started responding and recongizing my ability to take care of him.*
11:14pm here now. I went to bed at a little after 8 but have slept very little despite my exhaustion. Forgot to take meds and haven't needed sleeping aide until tonight. I just took it. SO hot and sticky it's hard to sleep. Plus I've decided that Bright is like Taevy II in the sleeping department! How someone so small can take up 3/4 of a double bed I will never know! =-) He's trashing about a lot tonight as well--which makes me worry that he will roll off onto the concrete floor. He just had a coughing attack for the first time--gagged. Normally it's just a cough here and there--not like the choking type of thing I just saw. Guess I'll try to get some sleep.

*POST TRIP NOTE: He did fall off the bed! But only once, and no worse for the wear (thankfully)!*


homeskoolmom5883 11:02 PM  

Oh Anita-- too funny, can't imagine the hospital expecting a stool sample from a baby on demand. Praying for the time to fly by before he is home with his family.
God bless,