Today has been exhilarating and exhausting. I was assigned to work with the surgical team and there definitely was not a dull moment.
It started with rounds in the female ward with Dr. Joan then I headed over to OPD to find 100+ patients waiting to be seen. Classic Monday. Tanner was making the best of it and seeing patients as fast as he could. I jumped in and saw a handful of patients before being called by the surgery guys. Dr. Greg Alty is an American surgeon working at Zimba with his son for a month doing pretty much any and every procedure you could imagine.
Surgery clinic basically entails reviewing each patient's case file, physical exam, determining if the patient needs an inpatient or outpatient procedure, and scheduling the surgery or doing the procedure there in the minor theatre (ORs are called theatres here.) Two men with BPH in retention needing Foley catheters, three hydroceles, two inguinal hernias... basically all urology surg cases, right up my alley (thanks to Alison, Dr. Locke, & Dr. Tissot). Two pediatric burn cases, which despite seeing many here, never gets easier to stomach, and a dermatofibrosarcoma protuberans (yep, it's a real word) and the day was wrapping up.
That is, until Dr. Dan called for me to assist him with a C section. The baby was breech so delivery would've been dangerous. The experience was nerve wracking and surreal and glorious. I was the first person to wrap my hands around that baby girl. I cut the cord and watched her first breath. Praise Him. Less than an hour later, we were wheeling the mother into recovery and the newborn baby girl was doing great.
I can't help but think back to the stark contrast one week ago when death and mourning had filled my first day at Zimba. Today was filled with new life and rejoicing. There is a time to be born and a time to die, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance. (Eccl 3) In death and life, we see His hand. The hand of the Holy God we serve. Our hope is not in this life for this world is not our home. May our patients rest in the truth. Praise the King of Glory.