Kòmanse Holidays

Snow gently falling, Christmas music softly playing, wrapped up in a blanket beside the fireplace  sipping a hot cup of cocoa, reading a capturing story.. All the things this time of year reminds me of.
Excitement is in the air as Christmas is drawing near. People are running ‘hither and yon’ to gather all the things they need for this gathering or that get together. The ‘hustle and busle’ of shopping, Christmas baking, wrapping presents, etc.. 
Memorable times singing Christmas carols to local shut ins. Going from house to house as the snow crunches with each step and your breath stops in midair, rosy cheeks and frozen fingers. The smiles on each one’s face as we leave. 
Family times.. moms traditional Christmas dinner.. Dad’s after eights.. Games.. Sledding.. Skating..Singing, and all the things we do this time of year. I am going to miss them all!
In Haiti, it is a different sense of excitement in the air. I know we all would love to spend Christmas at home with family and friends but, we have a new family to make many memories with. 
Singing Christmas carols under the palm trees, enjoying the ocean breeze, and  sharing memories from home.
We plan to close the clinic for a little over 2 weeks. It will give us all a chance to catch our breath and do some other things. We have many exciting things planned for the next several weeks largely including, scrubbing the clinic from top to bottom, sorting, organizing etc.. 

Clinic has slowed down the last few weeks. We have been seeing less people resulting in smaller clinic days. However, one thing I have noticed that doesn’t change much is the amount of women on the prenatal program. 
I have taken over the prenatal program which, Mali had been running. We follow the mothers until delivery, teaching them good nutrition and supporting them throughout their pregnancy.  On average, I have been seeing 40-50 women a week. Thankfully, we only deliver a small percentage of the babies at the clinic. We try to encourage the mothers to have their babies at home.
                           Prenatal Class
We have many happy times but, some sad as well. This past weekend one night, we had two births. Thanks, to Mali, Kindra, and Kayla they delivered them both so some of us could get a little shut eye. 

In the past month, we have had 2 still births which is a sad time. Recently, I also had a mother whom I couldn’t find the baby’s heart beat. We sent her out to get induced. These are the times when it hurts to be a nurse. The woman cried when we told her we believe her baby is dead. The next day she returned before heading to town. As soon as she saw me, she started crying. After a hug, she was ready to head out and face what was ahead of her.
The joyous times are when a mother returns who you took out for an emergency C-section. The last we had heard was the the baby wasn’t doing well. She walked into the clinic a few weeks later holding a healthy baby. 
The miracles that God shows us through these experiences. Today a woman who had went through a traumatic birth returned with her healthy baby. It was through tears of joy that I reunited with her. It is only because of God that her and her baby are alive. A miracle completely out of human control! 
The past two weeks it seems that we have had multiple stitch jobs. It seems that things like that come in batches. Some stitch jobs are fun while others are a little more wearing, especially when it is a child.  
Brandon, did a great job on his first stitch job
The one evening recently, I had a two year old come in who had dropped a heavy object on their foot, puncturing between the great and second toe. It was all I could do to start that stitch job. I think that all those involved where thankful when the child fell asleep.
I hope this gives you a little insight into what is happening at the clinic these days!

May your hearts be filled with the love of Christ, as you share Christ’s love with those you meet this Christmas Season. 

Blessings to you all, 
~ Alyssa 
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