Latifo is much much better. Back to his normal self. He's now getting his final day of nebulizer treatments and only 2x/day. :) He's smiling and playing and eating and cheerful! he looks great! Thanks for all the prayers.....
Now on to the next victim of this yucky cold.....Chelsia (11 months).
Poor tot is not doing well. It started yesterday morning that i noticed her intermittently wheezing and the tias said she hasn't been eating well for the last day or so. She got 9 breathing treatments in 24 hours......you may do the math. I'm tired. I like night shift, but NOT when i work all day too! I started her on prednisone (steroid) to help alliviate the swelling in her airways and help her breathe easier after her 3rd treatment in just 3 hours, but apparently it really hasn't kicked in...so her dose is being adjusted today and lots of praying will commence. Also, we are running out of nebulizer solution today which at times is impossible to find in the country, but praise the Lord, we found some at a shop in town today and are sending someone to go get it!
Please pray for Chelsia, that the meds will kick in and help her breathe easier, that she will get over whatever is making her body react like this, that she will grow stronger, that we will have the medical wisdom to treat her, that we will have the ENERGY to treat her. Pray that this virus stops, and that no other tots or babies get this! Some really can't afford to be this sick. Thanks for the prayers, we saw a miraculous change in latifo in under 24 hours that cannot be attributed to the meds. Praise God! I will keep you updated!
Yesterday evening I was called to the Baby House because Latifo was not doing well. He had vomited 2x earlier in the day and spiked a tiny fever at lunchtime. My Mozambican nurse did a malaria test and it was negative. I had just left him an hour earlier without a fever, playing and happy, without any real problems, having just eaten a snack. When arrived he was burning up and was having a lot of trouble breathing. I gave him a nebulizer, started him on some meds, and gave him some ibuprofen. An hour later he was looking better, but not great. I gave him another respiratory treatment 2 hours after the first one and put him to bed. I checked on him at 10 pm and gave him a 3rd respiratory treatment and some more Tylenol and put him back to bed. At 2 am when I checked on him he looked great! This am, he was still looking good (respiratory wise) and the western nurse in charge of the HIV program packed him up and headed off to the Doctors without Borders HIV program we take our kids to so that they could once over him and discuss if they wanted to do anything differently than the treatment plan I started. While there with the doctor, Latifo vomited 2 times and when he did it was evident that he wasn't really vomited but instead coughing up massive amounts of stuff from his lungs. Immediately afterward he started having severe respiratory problems. Anna, the nurse with him is at this moment in the pediatric emergency room with him getting him admitted.
Please pray for wisdom for the doctors and nurses; for clarity as to his problem and how to treat it; for strength for Latifo; for healing and a quick recovery; for the Tia that will be staying with him. We are all a little worried as the last 2 children we have had to admit, died while in the hospital from very simple respiratory distress that they couldn't treat. Latifo has come so far in such a short time, we are really praying for him to pull through this as well! Please pray for his family and mother who absolutely love him! I will keep you updated as I hear more. Thanks in advance for lifting this little one up in prayer!
This is Latifo (left) from a month ago and yes he's the same size as Lena (Right) a 15 month old.
Aug 27th: arrive in Atlanta
Aug 27-29: CLEMSON, SC
Aug 29-30: Atlanta, GA (pre-wedding festivities)
Aug 31-Sept 3: CLEMSON, SC
Sept 4-7: New Orleans area
Sept 8-11: CLEMSON, SC
Sept 11-13: Charlotte, NC (for friend's wedding)
Sept 13-24: Marion, NC (for medical missions intensive class)
Sept 24-Oct 1: Nashville, TN
Oct 1-3: Birmingham, AL
Oct 3-9: CLEMSON, SC
Oct 10-13: Family only weekend trip (location tbd later)
-I am planning on having dinner and speaking/showing a video to anyone who would like to come in the NASHVILLE area Sept 25 or 26th depending on my host's availability. Mark your calendars and email me asap if you wish to attend. If the number is too great, I will seek out a 2nd time and place.
-I would like to have a time to speak to any friends within driving distance of the BIRMINGHAM area as well (either Oct 2nd or 3rd). If you are interested in this, please email me and let me know which day would be better for you (Friday evening or Saturday brunch or lunch time) and how many would be coming so I can figure out a place, date, and time.
-I have a few other small meetings planned for speaking engagements and I will let everyone know times, dates, and places when they are all sorted out!
-If you would like me to speak to a small bible study, youth group, Sunday school, discipleship group ect, let me know and availabilities and I'll try to accommodate.
I am thankful for this opportunity to come home for a little bit of relaxation, refreshment, renewed vision, restoration, and most importantly fellowship with all my friends, family, and supporters. I am excited to share what God has been doing here the last 6 months since I've been gone and the things God has been stirring in my heart for the future. Thanks for all the support you have lent me. I am continually blessed!
Catia is on the left and Edsan on the rigth
They will turn 3 years old in just one month. They are very malnourished and not looking so hot at the moment, but are walking and talking and loving some food. They are each only about 16 pounds. That's right. i said 3 years old. One of our healthy normal 10 month old weighs more than each of them. It appears that they have been malnourished all their lives, but it has escalated lately after their mother died. Their grandmother semi looked after them, but they were forced to look through the trash for thier own food. I am taking every precaution with them for malnutrition as they are showing signs of edema in their hands and feet which is a harder and more dangerous type of malnutrition to treat and we are trying out very bland foods with low protein and sodium for the next week or so...and i rehydrated them today. I'll get them HIV tested this week as well. They've started on deworming meds, antibiotics, they have multivitamins, and i've already given them vitimamin A which is really important for malnourished tots. They will also get an appointment at the malnourishment clinic hopefully this week so they can get a lovely thing called plumpy nut....which is just a ready to eat food they give malnourished kids here....500 calories in one small packet of super fortified peanut butter with extra multivitamins. Sadly for some of the kids, it might be the only food they are getting plus a piece of bread a day. At the moment, the twin girls wouldn't be able to handle all that protein, but in a week or two...they'll need it.
And now to introduce their Auntie Admira.....
Yup, that's what i said. Their Aunt just made 2 years old 2 days ago and is bigger and stronger and healthier than the two of them...guess she should be since it's their Aunt!!! He he. Admira's mother is the grandmother of the twins. I love Africa!!! Admira has been already to the malnourishment program and is already on Plumpy nut so she is doing lots better than her neices (he he). She is about 19 lbs and still malnourished but much much less so. She's not getting the full treatment from me. She looks to be the spunkier of the 3 as well. only time will tell on this one.....
I wish you could see how tiny these girls are. they are really the size of one year olds....
Please pray for these 3 girls! They brought in an older boy from the same family and i'm not really sure much about him. I promise to post pictures in a day or two of these 3 if the internet allows me to. Pray they will remain healthy and strong. Pray for them to gain weight each and every day and that their bodies will heal from malnutrition. Pray for wisdom in how to treat them. Pray that their HIV tests are Negative!!! Pray that they settle quickly into the giant, noisy, and sometimes very scary baby house....especially when you are tiny and look like a doll baby.
(insert story here to drive home this point...alirio who just turned 2 in March loves the babies....and by babies i mean anyone he percieves is a baby...like Latifo who is almost 3 years old but is smaller than him. Latifo gives the evil eye to Alirio whenever he comes over to snuggle him, pinch his cheeks and coo at him. the other night i tried to explain to Alirio that Latifo was NOT a baby and was a whole year older than him even though he was a bit smaller. Alirio ignored me and my beautiful portuguese and kept cooing in his face. i believe Latifo then slapped him in his face and started to push away. they are hilarious! also he thinks Dionisio who is only 9 months younger than him and a whole inch taller than him is a "baby" still and does the exact same thing with him. Oh Alirio!) I love my babies!!! Ok, it's off to bed now. Admitting the new 3 wore me out today!!!
Now that you are in love with her, just like us, here's a little bit of information about her. She's 1 month old and arrived a little over a week ago. Her mother died from HIV within a week of her birth, leaving her father to care for a very small baby. She soon developed wierd sores with pus all over her head. The father has a nephew that lives with us here, so he came to us asking if we could care for his baby. When his nephew arrived a few years ago, he was very very ill with horrific malnutrition, Tuberculosis, untreated malaria, and HIV. We quickly took in Cleita, knowing that we couldn't trust this family to adquately care for such a small child, especially if the father wasn't really willing to. We have since find out that her mother was HIV + and she was given a single dose of nevirapime (anti-HIV drug) at birth, and then was to follow up with a month of AZT to decrease her chance of maternal transmission to only 1%....but the family didn't follow through. Her chances are good though, as she hasn't breastfed and did get nevirapime after birth. We are praying that she doesn't have HIV, but treating her all the same. She is getting a preventative antibiotic and we have drawn a viral load on her which we should get back in a bout 8 wks. This will determine if she will need to start on ARV's or she has only been exposed to the virus, but doesn't physically have it. Please pray with us. She is absolutely adorable and the other 3 toddlers in the Bercario already love her, saying "Beh" for bebe (baby) when I hold her. She is settling in quite nicely and seems really healthy. Her sores on her head are almost all gone now!
At the moment there is an amazing team from South Africa that is on the base. They have such an annointing and have been really ministering to our missionary team and speaking Truth into our lives. The Holy Spirit has been very present this week. Tonight at church we just worshiped and worshiped and worshiped some more....no one was ready to quit. We were singing a song in Portuguese that has the lines in it "open the floodgates of heaven, let it rain" over and over again, crying out. Suddenly, I could hear this beautiful sound and it sounded like English, it grew stronger and stronger and stronger, spreading throughout the church until all the children were singing together in unison to the exact same tune in perfect English, a song that no one else knew including the worship team:
Please continue to pray for our ministry here, our staff members, youth and children, who have recently accepted the Lord, for coverage over our base. We are so blessed at the moment! Also continue prayers for Jaime. I am planning on visiting him in the hospital on Saturday and will update more then!