Bahai beach

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Bahai Beach 61

Bahai Beach 60

Tomorrow some time

May 17, 2007

Snotty nose, coughing out my lungs, fever a splitting headache has doused the inspiration by my muse. Even as I type away now one of the Mimi’s is trying to curl her way up the keyboard. And then I was more or less obliged to sacrifice my rooster for the sake of extended sleeping hours of my felloe workers. The chicken soup did not taste that well on that day.

With all our fine-tuned planning most of the health staff in the camp is out at the same time. It actually leads me to do more hands on work again. Checking out the babies, seeing the more difficult cases in the clinic and today’s delivery. A 15 year old with female genital mutilation presented while in labor. I asked Zahara to step behind and to let one of the other midwives do the delivery. The young girl did not flinch and the progress of the labor was steady. In the final stages of such a delivery a cut (episiotomy) needs to be done. The head came out slowly and as I had asked to check for the umbilical cord the midwife found that it was wrapped around the neck. She rapidly clamped the cord with two clamps and then cut it after which the baby girl could be born. Like the mother it was a strong child so it started to cry instantly. Observing deliveries like today’s gives a very good feeling. When a danger symptom/sign presents the midwives know how to act rapidly.

As I walked out of the delivery room after checking the baby I walked into the meeting of our Health Committee. The theme of their meeting was neonatal mortality. In an attempt to understand the problem they had to write down root causes and most of the essential causes were mentioned. Next week they will work on solutions for each and every cause. Step by step responsibility in the camp is being handed back to the refugees.

It is also seen at other levels. My community health supervisor is the first teacher for the community health workers. Yet not all is love and peace. The monthly meeting with the refugee community leaders turned out to be a three and half hour blood fest, where accusations flew left and right and tempers flared.

Perhaps it is due to the heat. This month is supposed to be the month for early rains. All we have had so far is some splatters of drops. Next month will be the hottest month with historically no rain until the July/August rains arrive.

I realize every day I go to the camp the completion of a cycle is nearing. As my mind wanders I try to frame my thoughts about the progress over the last year. Given the nature of the last 11 months, the dynamics, the obstructions, the obstacles maintaining a status quo should be perceived as a success yet clearly at points there is an increase in strength of the program. It is a joyful thought I will cherish while l put my drowsy head to rest.

For those of you awaiting stories of India. I am sure the muse will return soon-ish. After all I cannot be in mourning for my rooster too long there are other chooks to take care of.

Just a final little story I managed to buy a digital video camera and I was in full conviction that I had a tape as well. Yet on an arrival the tape was a head cleaning tape. O well. I hope I can find somebody to find me a Panasonic tape in N’Djamena



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Anonymous Anonymous said...

So much to think about, so much to do, so many committments to juggle, so many people to keep contact with and still, you manage to to post so late at night when you are so ill.

You are an inspiration to so many.

12:30 AM  
Blogger Ashis said...

it releases the pressure

8:32 PM  
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