The thoughts of a woman trying to live simply yet abundantly, contentedly yet expectantly, wisely yet adventurously... all for His glory.

11.04.2009

bittersweet


This is it: my last day. Today is a day for packing (I have not saved it for the very last second, Mama), goodbyes, and one last walk into Cotonou to buy some cards.

But yesterday? Yesterday was a day for dancing.

Through no fault of anyone in particular, yesterday's shift--my last one in Benin--certainly followed the idea that one should "go out with a bang."

It was one of those shifts where I just couldn't keep up with the myriad changes happening with each of my five VVF patients. Nor could I keep up with the hundreds of little technical things that you have to do with VVF patients to make sure that their surgeries have a good chance of succeeding. All of the nurses who worked yesterday's shift were overwhelmed.

But in the midst of all the catheter problems and opening abdominal incisions and dressing changes, we had another dress ceremony. Four ladies danced yesterday to celebrate being dry and to give testimony to a hope reborn. For once, there were not crowds of crew members or communications people taking pictures of it all. Yesterday was just the VVF ladies, the nurses, and the disciplers. But we still sang and clapped and praised God for the way he works miracles in our lives and in our bodies.

In the middle of a terrible, horrible, very-bad day, I paused to listen to the stories of the women.

I have had this trouble for 12 good years.
I had to travel for several days to come to the ship.
I thought my life was over; I thought it would always be this way.

I listened to the stories of the women--Irene, Animutu, Sekinatu, and Mariama--and it crashed down on me that God is sovereign. I was in the middle of a stressful shift, but I caught my breath as I remembered that God calls each of us by name. He knows each of our stories. He wove each of us together.

And for the first time, I got off the sidelines and joined the ladies dancing in the middle.

(Photo by Mercy Ships communications team)


(When I next blog, it will be from home... see you all then!)

4 comments:

deb said...

Your words bring tears of joy this morning. I've saved reading your words until a quieter time, but this week isn't working out that way.
But you remind that every moment counts. Truly.
I hope you have a wonderful homecoming, your family is blessed to have you .
I'll be back...

Michelle said...

Amazing blog. I just can't get over how overwhemlingly blessed I feel to have found your wonderful blog. I think I will recommend you to my sister to read:)

Blessings,
Michelle

Tea said...

I love that you joined in with the dancing! How beautiful!

lindsay said...

Deb, Michelle, and Tea: thank you all for celebrating with me and the VVF ladies! I wish you could see them when they dance!