Friday, April 13, 2007

Travel Journal: Friday, 3-15-07

*Sorry again to anybody who might actually care about these travel journals and has come to check the blog only to find nothing this week! Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming...

God literally poured blessings upon us this morning. We left at 6:30am for the 37 Military Hospital and arrived at around 7:15. In case you're wondering about the name, yes it is a military hospital. Military personnel are given priority and they serve civilians with the extra time. When we got there they said all numbers (appointments) for the day had been taken. It was 7:15! Edward asked the nurse, "Please?!". She called the doctor over and Edward told me I would need to beg him. But to our surprise he said he would see us. We paid 85,000 cedis ($9) and sat down. Before long there were 40 people with numbers...and us. Edward and I settled in for a long day. In fact, Edward had something else to take care of so he left and said he would be back in a little while.

Bright started screaming about that time and I could tell it was going to be a long day. Everybody looking at me...asking WHY he cried...wishing he would STOP crying. But next thing I knew I heard a gentleman calling "Baby boy Bright!" I assumed it was just paperwork but into the exam room we went! The ENT "specialist" (didn't find him so special) listened to Bright and looked in his mouth and nose and declared he was congested. Gee...thanks doc. I asked him to look into Bright's ears because he had been pulling at them and he WAS supposed to be the ear specialist. He said they were "waxy" and needed to be washed out.

Off we went to the guy that washes out ears. They took a syringe of HOT water and sprayed it full blast into Bright's ears on each side, three times. So much stuff came out! Nasty! Then we went back to the ENT who said the ears were fine but he wanted us to go to Pediatrics--they would check out the lungs.

I geared up for a long wait at Peds. but the aid walked me right past everybody (again) and we went directly to the doc (again). This was the first doctor I liked! He took time to really listen to Bright's breathing (by actually waiting for him to stop crying so he could hear). He also looked closely at Bright's feet to determine if they were swollen from edema or just fat--they are just fat. =-) In the end he said Bright should have a lab done every 2 weeks for his anemia to make sure his numbers don't go back down. He said he thinks he just has a virus and that is causing the chest congestion but he wants Bright to have a chest x-ray just to be sure.

Off we went to Radiology (Edward is still gone all of this time and has no idea where I am). We got to Radiology and they said the machine is down--come back next week. Okay. At this point I feel peace that Bright is okay until then so I called Edward to tell him where we were at and he met us there.

It had started a beautiful rain. A cooling rain. A nourishing rain. It was only 9:45am. We expected to be there all day. Edward was shocked that they took Bright first (as we had asked for NO special treatment) and said, "God has poured blessings on us today." Indeed. Indeed.

The blessings continued on the cool ride home. For the first time Bright came out to play!!! For the first time he gave me a kiss! For the first time he smiled over and over again. For the first time that I have EVER seen/heard (even at Eugemot) he laughed! He laughed while he was looking at me!! A hearty bellowy toddler laugh that is distinctly and utterly my son's! He also took out the photo album I brought (his favorite "toy") and pointed over and over again to my pic when I said, "Where's Mama?" He identifies Taevy correctly as well, and loves to point at Grandma B's pic for me to tell her name.

Bright understands the following in English: no, sleep, more, bite, drink, hi, and bye. In fact I will count "hi" as his first word because he repeated a toddler version of it over and over again on the way home! He also tried to say "out" and I swear sometimes it sounds like he says "Eddy" when he looks at his "Uncle" Edward!

Bright is currently taking his best nap since I've had him. He usually does little 1 hour or less cat naps. But he's been sleeping for almost 2 hours now, in the relatively cool day air. God is good.

I've been thinking about what we should do with Bright if I have to leave him. I don't want to hurt anybody at Eugemot if I don't bring him back, but I also feel like Accra is a better place for him--especially if he needs labs every 2 weeks. I broached the subject with Edward. He said Bright is our son now and we should do what gives us peace. He said the doctor and lab in Ho Hoe is not good at all--even for basic stuff. I asked him what he would do and he said there was "no question"--he would leave Bright in Accra with Paul and Lawrencia. So this gives my heart peace. I don't have a strong feeling whether or not Bright will be able to come home with me. But I do have a strong sense of peace that if I do have to leave him he would be in capable hands here.

10:20pm---Ahhhh....a bag of water and a 100 calorie Oreo Bar--what else could a girl wish for? Passport? Immigrant visa perhaps? ;-)

So Bright ended up sleeping for 4 hours today! I ended up going out for the last hour and had a good conversation with Paul. Edward and Paul are both so awesome--but Edward is a quiet man and sometimes we struggle for things to talk about. Paul is a talkative man and we never seem to end up without something to talk about.

So today I did everything wrong with Bright after he woke up. I counted our play session as a way bigger thing than he did, so I let the kids have him for a while as Lawrencia taught me how to make Red Red and Fried Plantains (yum!). Then I was really dying to go to the internet and knew it would take me a few hours so I left and continued to let Bright be in the care of the kids (can't take him to the I-cafe). Paul walked me there (maybe 3/4 of a mile) and I would walk myself home. My 2 hours flew by--then I passed a dressmaker's shop and bought a cloth for Bright and I (baby cloth) for $5. It was pitch black and I was a little nervous about my walk home but told myself I could do it. It is HARD to see at night in Ghana! Not many lights to guide the way and plenty of open sewers, ditches, and the like to stumble into/upon. I was almost home when Paul called to see if I was okay.

When I got home the children sang and danced for me for about an hour. After that they asked questions about me and America for another hour. After that we prayed for about 20 minutes. These children can PRAY! It is so humbling. There is a 14 year old girl named Edna that could out pray the best preacher in America! They prayed for Bright's healing and for an adoption agency to help them, and for God to give Eric and the children at home strength and comfort while I am gone.

Tonight I was asked to video tape the singing so once again Bright was in someone else's hands. He wouldn't stop crying when he was on my back so Paul took him. Before everything was over Bright was asleep in Paul's arms. During it all I kept catching glimpses of Paul, Bright, and Lawrencia together. I almost feel guilty that Bright is ours instead of theirs. He loves them. He likes them. They know how to do everything like he likes. I feel like an utter failure. But I don't know how hard to try because I don't know if Bright is coming home yet. I'm just very confused on how to handle it. The books don't talk about this particular "what if."
Please God, allow this baby to fall in love with me--at least a little bit, before I leave.


Kelly 10:15 PM  

Oh good your back! I was going through withdrawal.

cameo 11:51 PM  

My heart sang when I read how Bright laughed for real with you. Really! I've had a crappy week so this really made my day!!! Thank you for keeping up with the travel journal, I look forward to it every day! You and Nichole's braille lessons ROCK!!!!