This past April in Magambua, every week for about three weeks we went through a routine like this below, it happens in Swahili, but I’ll write it in English so you don’t have to punch it in to Google Translate 🙂
note- ‘Hodi’ (pronounced with a long o and the i makes a long e sound) is a verbal knock in Swahili
__Around 2am at our house:_ _
Night guard at our bedroom window- “Hodi Daktari”
Me- a groggy “Yes”
guard- “There’s a patient at the clinic”
Me-“What’s he complaining about”
guard- “just a fever”
Me- “Nothing else?”
guard- “Well, it seems he can’t walk and he’s also not talking” Me- “hmm, doesn’t sound good, is he unconscious?”
guard- “Yeah, you could say that”
Me- “I’ll be right up”
After arriving at the clinic, I found an unconscious 10 year old boy who had been having high fevers for days. A malaria blood slide showed hundreds of malaria parasites in just those few drops of blood. I ran a couple other tests and admitted him and started an IV. The pictures below shows this little boy staring off in to space, suffering from a typical malaria coma. Thankfully he hadn’t had any seizures yet. We began IV malaria medication and kept him on IV fluids and meds over two days. He remained unconscious for 36 hours…… and then, praise the Lord, he woke up, and said he was hungry!
The third picture shows him and his father warming themselves in the morning sun on the porch outside the children’s ward three days after he was admitted.
Thankfully, he made a full recovery, not all cases of cerebral malaria do.
The second patient in the pictures is the one with the crutches……… the big girl, not the little one! Thank you for praying for Melissa’s knee surgery, she’s been doing physical therapy now for the last week and hopefully will get to take the brace off soon. Rachel’s been playing with another set of crutches, I guess we’ll call it “sympathy play”, since Mommy has crutches. Maybe it’s an attention thing because I was doting on Melissa more than Rachel right after the surgery of course!
Melissa has been staying with the Orners at RVA, who are old TZ friends and mentors of ours from back during our first days as new missionaries in 2006. They’ve been so wonderful, and such a huge help to both of us! Many friends at RVA have also shown such great support, and the school’s physical therapist has been so gracious to be willing to see Melissa. We’re very blessed.