Just wanted to update ya’ll on a few tots:
Antonio, 20 months with chronic ear infections, is having surgery today (Monday) at 7am my time…..most of you will still be asleep. AND he’s been sick all the week. Please pray for his protection during the surgery; steady hands of the surgeon; wisdom for the medical team caring for him; a successful surgery; a quick and painfree recovery; strength and patience for the tia staying with him in the hospital to care for him (hopefully if they allow him to stay overnight); a very merry CHRISTMAS for him-yucky surgery so close to the big day; healing!
Lucia, the new baby in the bercario (nursery), has tested TB NEGATIVE!!! Hooray! She is doing amazingly. She has gained a little over 3 lbs in exactly 3 weeks (we are now weighing in a little over 12 lbs). Her skin is healing but very, very slowly. She is showing us her very spunky personality. She’s quite a spit-fire little girl and oh so sweet. She’s a fighter. We have tested her for HIV and she’s testing positive for the moment. They use rapid tests here that only test for the presence of antibodies which means she’s been exposed…..given her family situation and her present health status, we don’t have much hope of her only producing antibodies….she probably actually has the virus. At 18 months they will test her again and if she’s positive again it will be declared that she is HIV+. All this being said….Praise the Lord for provisions. Until very recently, the rules were a child had to wait until they were 18 months, or very close to it, before they were started on ARVs (antiretrovirals for hiv management) as they wanted to only treat those who actually had it. They have now changed it and when a baby at 9 months tests positive they draw blood and check cell counts. If she’s low enough, she’ll start on treatment IMMEDIATELY and then they’ll retest her at 18 months and stop therapy if she somehow tested negative. We would love to believe she is negative, but her health status is so poor…….We are thankful that she might be able to start therapy soon though. We are praying and waiting for her counts to come back at the moment. So we’re giving her some preventative antibiotics in the meantime, treating her skin issues, beefing her up, and giving her lots of love. She’s now eating yogurt once a day, real rice with toppings pureed into baby food once a day, a yummy breakfast cereal (papino) with peanut butter twice a day, and lots of milk with a sippy cup since she’s a “big girl” at 9 months. Also she loves to say the words olah and aqua.
Dionisio, chefe of the bercario, is eating big kid food….well sort of. He’s got it down to 3 bottles a day (from a sippy cup as he detests the bottle), cereal for brkst, yogurt twice a day, and lunch and dinner of baby food (vegetables and fruits only), and drinking lots and lots of aqua from a sippy cup-he screams and reaches for the cup when he wants more. He’s sleeping 10 hrs through the night as well. We are transitioning him to center food, but there’s only ONE problem. He hates any and ALL food that doesn’t have a very consistent smooth texture…..stinker stinker spoiled stinker. I’m just thankful he’s eating. So with donations, I have gone in with another missionary that has a girl in her dorm needing help with food to purchase an amazing food processor. I am now making baby food….ok, well, the kitchen is making rice and toppings, the tias are collecting the food for me, and I’m pureeing it like there’s no tomorrow. Today was the first trial run. Lucia LOVED it. Dionisio….well, being the eyeore that he was…..LIKED it, but couldn’t stand to admit it. So he screamed his pretty little head off in absolute protest all the while eating it like the big boy he is (he’s 11 months in 2 days). Stinker. Round two is tomorrow. I’m going to win this one. Developmental battle is up next. But THIS….I will win NOW!