Welcome to my blog!

This blog was created with the intention of sharing my life and midwifery experiences with my community as I branch into international midwifery. I hope to keep people up to date and in touch with me, and with the places and people where I'll be.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

august 14th, in port au prince

so...not too much has happened since i last wrote...a couple of days when i arrived to the hospital, when i walk into the delivery room, there is a dead baby on the counter, from the night before, just still on the counter, laying on dried blood (i guess from when the cord was cut)...the baby remained there for maybe half the day...there was no box to put the baby in...no one acted like they really noticed...things like this, there are times when i really step back into the neutral observer role, it's not my job to change the way everything is handled...
there was a baby born (by c/s) with hydrocephaly...the c/s was done for failure to progress despite really strong labor, and after the bb came, we could all see why she hadn't been progressing...the only way this baby will make it is if they come to port au prince and see a specialist...which may or may not be possible for this family to do..
someone came in with an abruption the other day too...bleeding alot...no FHT's...first she was put on and IV with pit, but then she kept bleeding alot so they did a c/s...and she got a blood transfusion...
the lady who was 25 weeks pregnant with blood pressure 230/180, she was induced and had her (dead) baby, a couple of days ago...she is doing ok...still has facial swelling and very high B/P, but hasn't had any convulsions...there is a shortage of blood pressure medication in the hospital, so it's hard to treat people, and so many of our ladies have really high B/P...
you know, i never see really bad tears here, or hemorrhage, or shoulder dystocia...the things i saw alot where i used to work...but what i do h=see here all the time, is hypertension, pre eclampsia and eclampsia, severe anemia...
yesterday i came to port au prince, because there is this lady here named beth, who is becoming a midwife, and her preceptor is out of town and she has ladies due, so she asked me to come...beth is an amazingly warm, sweet, compassionate woman, who has been living with her husband in port au prince for 20 years. they raised their kids here, and they do alot of work here. they have an orphanage and help place children for adoption, they put up tarps and ran a small hospital after the earthquake, they have built houses for people who lost everything is the quake, stuff like that. really giving. she has some AMAZING stories, just stories of peoples' lives here...things that happen here all the time. she has a blog, that can be found on their website: heartlineministries.org--if any of you are interested in reading some really interesting stories right from the ground here, i would encourage you to check it out.
anyway, i am here, going to do some prenatals with her this week, maybe help with a class for new mothers, and hopefully we'll get to have a few births too. she has 5 or 6 women in dates now, so we'll see.
we went yesterday to this public hospital here to check on this lady she had transported there...oh, such sad conditions at this hospital...basically the same conditions as where i work, but bigger. there were women everywhere laboring, no one ever checks their vitals, they don't have any tools to even check peoples' vitals. she said the night before was even worse---way more people--blood everywhere, trash everywhere...a huge chaotic mess. wow.
it is fun having a little change of scenary...i think it's less hot here too...maybe because we're right next to the ocean...i will be here for 6 days total i think--returning on thursday, in order to get ready and pack to move on friday or saturday...
the guy i've been dating, blada, he is so sweet...we are having such a good time together. things just keep opening up and getting better and better. he's a really cool guy. super easygoing, at ease. one thing i'm looking forward to about moving is that i can have him over whenever i want. that will be so nice. like normal adults.
taking the bus here (actually it was a van) to port au prince was fun...a little adventure...we were all packed in there...it was fun seeing how it is done here...part of the road between PAP and hinche is paved, part of it not...they're working on paving it (finally??)--there are no real roads in haiti. there is no infrastructure in haiti. i haven't taken a tap tap yet (they don't have them in hinche--there are just motorcycle taxis) and i don't care if i never do...you're totally exposed to all the truck fumes, and the dust on the road...
i am feeling really thankful to be here, to have the privledge to sit with these people, to be learning creole, to be witnessing peoples' lives...wow. and spending time with beth is really special, because she has so many years here, and has such a big heart, so talking to her about all of the issues in haiti and hearing her perspectives is really cool.
i am loving and missing all you guys too. i think about all of you all the time-you're always in my awareness. i am cherishing this time here but also looking forward to coming home, re-centering, seeing many of you, eating healthy food and getting in shape again...those things will be so good too. in the meantime, i am just soaking all of this in. i don't think i'll ever be able really to describe this experience in words, in writing or in person...there are so many levels...you see so many little things that contribute to the whole picture...how do you remember all of those little things you saw or felt...the reality in haiti is SO different, so completely different in so many ways, to what most of us are used to...
anyway, take care, all of you, thank you for your support and love, i know it's there and always feel it, so thank you...


  1. Love you so, so much!!! We're lucky to have you on this planet we call home.

  2. Wow again,just blown away by your stories and perceptions.Sounds like a nice change of scenery for you this week.love you dear,spent some nice time with your mom in the pond last week.

  3. you are such a good soul Reina, may you continue to follow the Spirit
    know you are always in my heart and prayers