A week of Thanksgiving
Monrovia Travel Blog› entry 27 of 34 › view all entries
Its hard to believe that in a couple of days it will be December. With the weather here being in the mid 90s and very humid, its easy to forget that there is snow back home. Time seems to stop here. With 7 days and counting til I return home to my "normal" life, I take a moment to reflect and offer my thanks to all those who have helped me make it to this point. I would list your names individually, but it would be long and boring and, like the Oscars, the thank you speeches need to be kept short. Thank you to the members of Joy Lutheran and Immanuel Lutheran churches for your donations and prayers of support. To my co workers, I miss you and will see you soon! To my family, who not only supported me 100%, but found lost boxes, cat sat, and lent an ear when I was homesick.
The surgical part of the outreach has come to an end. Its a bitter sweet moment. Its been a long, hard 41 weeks (I was only here for 13 of those weeks), we served thousands of patients in that time, changed even more lives (I have more exact figures somewhere). We had over 180 personnel come through the OR during that time, I have no idea how many different people came through when I was here- we have the highest turn over rate on the entire ship. Because it was the last week, we did smaller cases, but no less difficult. We had some troublesome babies this week who wanted nothing more than give us all grey hair. We worked long hours this week, trying to get as many patients done before the end, for the ship won't be returning to Liberia for at least several years.
Thursday was Thanksgiving, as many of you know. Thanks to some early planning and the best mommy in the world, I was able to make real American pumpkin pies. Wednesday, after work, I set up shop in the crew galley and rolled out the crust and mixed the filling. I introduced pumpkin pie to the world that day. Americans are far out numbered in the OR (only 3), so most people have never heard of, let alone had pumpkin pie before.
Today was a very emotional day. I had to say goodbye to my orphanage. Lots have changed at the orphanage since we first started coming. They have started transplanting their garden from the nursery to their new beds- they have peppers and callard greens in so far. The latrines are coming alone, they just need the commodes and doors to be put in and the add the shower house onto the back.
As my time here draws to a close, I know I'll have more goodbyes, more last times. I've watched others go through them, I vaguey remembering going through it last year, but I'm dreading it as the days get less and less. Don't get me wrong, I can't wait to go home either, but I know my heart will belong here in Africa.