Sunday, September 18, 2011

Many people make up my home in Haiti

It is 9:30 am and two mamas and babies are resting in the postpartum room on clean sheets with plates of fruit and porridge. It is Sunday morning and I tell the new Haitian midwife we are training that birth is a way of knowing and thanking God, in our own private way; for the miracle of it and that so often it all goes so perfectly. For the hope and possibility of that sweet new life.

In the place I live, everyone who is here, works to make that possible. There is Jason and his son Junior who bury the placentas and answer the knocks on the gate or call for transport to the hospital. They live in very small, tidy rooms outside and are a constant presence. They help with the garden and our the security which often means sitting outside by the gate visiting with those who pass by. Santo, the community health worker lives here and Marie the Haitien midwife and then any volunteers. Everyday our numbers swell with moms and babies, visitors and guests. I live upstairs in a dorm like life with communal meals and beds here and here. We move from our "home" to work in an instant, never knowing what will come our way or what the next moment will bring. The cook and the person who cleans and washes the clothes and sheets come each morning and stay until late. They sing and laugh and I can hear them chopping vegetables during the day. Their children come to and play here as well.

We all dream big dreams for Haiti and her children. We try to learn to talk each other's language and to make birth for the babies in the surrounding villages a safer, sweeter part of life.
I am never alone even when I am sometimes lonely for friends and family and those things sweet and dear to me.

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