Yesterday I woke up feeling, not so great. I got up at my usual time but i felt weak, nauseous, fatigued, etc. I did my normal morning routine before work but by 0645a still felt the same so decided it was probably best that I call out and rest. Now for anyone that knows me, I HATE calling out and rarely ever am sick enough to bring myself to the point of taking a day of rest. BUT once i arrived down on the wards i had found that 2 other nurses had called out and that they were already scrambling to disperse patients so I prayed that God would give me the strength and love to not just get through my shift but to get through it while pouring love onto my patients. God is so good and he did just that.
After my shift ended, and as soon as i went up to my room, i laid my head down and slept for 12 hours. I woke up today feeling refreshed and healthy. Todays shift was a bit different than the day before. I wish i could tell you as i walked into the wards the little children came running into my arms with hugs and kisses but instead i will tell you the truth. Today I felt like nurse Ratched. Forcing children to drink Ensure, pulling out nasogatric tubes, cutting out stitches, and pinning children down to give normal saline nebs. To say the least my children did NOT love Nurse Becca. On a 'normal day' i can say to one of my kiddos "Atooouu" which means 'hug' in Mina (the local dialect) and one of the kids will run over and give me a hug. Instead today when i said Attoouuu, my one little patient, the Ward Princess, said "Ouwoo" which means "no"....Ouch....
I continued on my day knowing that even though my kiddos considered me to be like Nurse Ratched i knew that the torture i was putting them through was for there own good. Even if they always said "Ouwoo" to my "Attoouuu" I would keep on doing what i knew i needed to do to get them better and to show them love through these seemingly torturous actions.
As i was explaining to the different Mamas why i was torturing their children I asked them a few simple questions. To the first Mama who's child refused to eat or drink after getting a cleft lip and palate repair, i asked "well what does he drink at home in your village? water, milk, juice, soda, tea?" To which the mama replied "water". I then said "But what else besides water, he must drink something else." And she then replied "Water is all we can afford." ..... I stopped my jaw from dropping and i held back my tears at the reality that this Mama and her little boy couldn't even afford a glass of milk or a cup of juice. My ignorance was obnoxious. I realized that there was so much MORE i needed to learn and how much more i needed to LISTEN. I then moved on to my second Mama. I explained to the Mama that her Baby who also had a cleft lip and palate done was having some trouble breathing. I told her that we also suspected that he has a respiratory infection and most likely worms so we would be started him on some new medicines. I then explained to her that he really needed to get up and walk around to help his lungs open up and his bowels open up as well. She picked her 2 year old son up and plopped his feet on the floor. I then motioned to her that she needed to put his flip flops on before he walked around the hospital. She softly replied "He doesn't own any." As soon as the translator told me what she said that same weakness and nausea i had felt the night before crept back in but this time because of the poverty that sat before me. I asked around to a few nurses to see if they had any kid flip flops and instead went down to our 'Boutique' and found a little pair of 'Tweety' shoes that were a little big, but would do the trick. I handed them to Mom and her face lit up as she placed the new shoes on her baby boy.
Leaving work i felt really really sad... Water and flip flops, come on really.. Later that day while listening to some music this song popped on (Give me your eyes by Brandon Heath) and the sadness that I had felt came pouring out...
Give me your eyes for just one second
Give me your eyes so I can see
Everything that I keep missing
Give me your love for humanity
Give me your arms for the broken hearted
Ones that are far beyond me reach
Give me your heart for the ones forgotten
Give me your eyes so I can see..
Thank you Father for letting me see a glimpse of your heart. God I pray that you will give me more of your heart, God that you will give me your eyes to see what is sitting right in front of me. God help me to reach the forgotten and help me to be your hands and feet. I love you Papa! In Jesus name i pray all these things... AMEN
A matter of belief
3 years ago