Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Best Christmas Present Ever Was A Day Late.

So I am going to start this blog by telling you about Christmas at Tenwek the last few days and leave you in suspense about the best Christmas present ever until the end. This is probably due to some OCD making me tell the story chronologically so here we go. I only worked one day last week - Wednesday. Monday and Tuesday I was in Nairobi Thursday I was sick, I think only my second sick day ever since becoming an RT. Thursday I was cheered up by a package sent by my friends as the Mis, thanks guys, It was exciting to receive all the Dutch Christmas treats and a card with encouragement.

Friday was a day off - I was invited to visit a local orphanage to bring them some Christmas cheer. On the way to the orphanage we stopped and bought them some flour, sugar and other staples, there were a few Kenyan youth with us who shared the Christmas story with them and then we played some games. I taught the kids to play spoons (card game) it was rather interesting as they have minimal experience with cards, and did not realize there was a difference between K,J, and Q, there was also a lot of unintentional cheating going on as they shared the cards with one another. The favourite part was the race for the spoon, so we had fun.

Friday night was Christmas Eve dinner with some friends followed by caroling at church. It is so nice to sing all the well known Christmas Carols, although I did miss Ere Zij God.

Yesterday was Christmas day. I spent it like many of you spent your Christmases I swapped gifts with friends, ate some turkey and other wonderful side dishes. In the evening one of the missionary families shot off some fireworks, this was great. The strangest things about the fireworks was that we shot them off at 730 and it was dark enough - part of living on the equator.

I am writing this on Sunday we had church this morning, Kenya does not celebrate Thanksgiving like North Americans do, so this Sunday was called a Thanksgiving service. It was great to hear how much God has worked here at Tenwek. After church I enjoyed a mango and was talking to my roommate - an OB/GYN Dr here at Tenwek when her pager went off - she was not on call this weekend but called anyway. I was glad she did, for there was a Mom in labour with Quadruplets. I talked to the pediatrician on duty asked if I could help out and than we both ran up to the Hospital. When we got there the first baby had already been delivered normally and was in the nursery doing OK, because the next baby was breech (footling) the mom was brought to the OR for a C-section (we could not find a stretcher so we wheeled her over in a wheelchair). they did the C-section in theater and the pediatrician, intern (1st year residents) and I waited in recovery room for the babies. The intern got the first one dry, positioned, suctioned and bagged and prayed that she pinks up - she did. While she was working on the first one, number two showed up, the pediatrician took care of her same procedure. Now here is the last one - mine same as the others dry, position, suction and bag. She pinked up (for those of you saying "wait only three" remember that one was born before we got there). It was so exciting to be there for this momentous occasion. These babies: one boy and three girls still have a long way to go as they were born at 29 weeks and each weigh about 1 kg, however they are breathing on their own and look OK. For all you medical people: the mom did receive dexamethasone a day or 2 ago which is good for the lung development but we don't have surfactant here. Please pray for these babies. Though there will be struggles this was a great Christmas present, and I still am so excited a few hours later.

I hope you all had a blessed Christmas. The excitement of new birth is really what Christmas is all about- without the birth of Christ we would not be celebrating today. I also learned something (I have learned a lot but I will share this one with you) for all of you saying Christmas is not really when Christ was born and the Christians took over a pagan holiday and made it Christmas. They chose December 25th for a reason, for at the time that was thought to be the winter solstice (longest night shortest day) and once that had passed it symbolized that the light was coming - and Christ is the light. Something I learned here in Kenya where there is no winter solstice.

I have also added some pictures to facebook, some of the same some different see them here


  1. Hey Annette! In Edmonton you could set off fireworks at 5pm on Christmas Eve and it would certainly be dark enough! What a great story: the birth of babies is always one of such great hope.

    Merry Christmas to you (a little late)!

  2. Hi Annette!
    Do the babies have names yet?
    What a wonderful Christmas miracle!
    Take care.

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