This was QUITE a stretch of time. I took Sarmila and Ranjit to Immanuel hospital at 5:30 on Tuesday afternoon. The beginning of the baby's deliverance began that evening. The Dr... an amazing one ... had indicated at our appointment the previous day that thelabor needed to begin a few days earlier than December 2nd, the due date, because of what had been indicated during the ultrasound and checkup.
I knew it would be a long time, at least one full night and day, but not sure beyond that. Well, because of a pile of physical problems, I was awakened time after time after time. They would holler for me and I would jump off the couch. As a response, I held her hand, helped her change position, went out to the nursing area when a physical issue had hit unexpectedly, such as being way too hot, or whatever else was needed.
By the end of Wednesday, the Dr. thought the baby's arrival could be during the night. Sleeping became worse... less opportunity to rest, more and more problems. And, the baby was not moving the right direction. Sarmila is 4'7"... and the pregnancy put her body in a stressful situation as the little girlshifted from place to place.
Today, shortly before noon, we had reached the "pushing" process. The Dr. came in to check her out carefully. After about an hour of going through the pushing, we were given a short rest time. After the process began again, within about 15 minutesthe Doctor said there was no choice, but she needed a C-section. And it became an emergency-oriented aspect. She and the nurses moved quickly. Within 10 minutes they were in the operating area. And, sadly to me, I was left out. Ranjit could be there, of course.
It wasn't very long before I heard the news. The baby had come easily and WOULDN'T have made it without the C-section. Sophia's head was too large and in the wrong direction and it was a dangerous situation. She also weighed 7 lbs. 2 oz. Pretty large considering her mom's size. After
it was all over, and I was ready to head home so I could rest and be
with my Sweetheart, I was able to gently touch and kiss Sarmila's cheek in her recovery room, and then see and hold Sophia...
Ranjit carried everything of mine down to the parking lot for me, and
thanked me several times for helping them, caring for them.
His words touched my heart. They were a joyous blessing.
[The nurses and Doctor and other helpers in that department have said many times that they appreciate me, that I'm an unusual helper. And, believe me, with my forever working office job life that has nothing to do with hospitals, doing these "baby delivery God-jobs" 6 times and being reasonably accurate in my actions is ONLY because of the Lord. (Sophia is Bhutanese baby number 6 in the past 15 months.) Don't know if this is the end or not... depends only on the Lord.]
It was a wonderful hour. I'd been wanting to meet Elizabeth. We'd emailed for some weeks while I was planning my trip to the Northwest. As a pastor's wife and buried in people [which is normal in so many churches] there was no guarantee that we would pull this off.
Then it happened. We met in Vancouver. My friend, Linda, with whom I was going to spend that night, and I had connected in the area where Elizabeth could come.
We met again in April, 2011, after 45 years. Were
friends in high school many years earlier.
It was a blessing to see her again.
[Will tell THAT story soon!]
I recognized Elizabeth immediately when she climbed out of her car. THAT is a surprise, since we hadn't truly "known" each other.
Could I say much more? No. We talked about blog issues, church situations, desires for the future for ourselves and others, and how to serve the Lord and share His love with others. Is there anything that's more important? I don't think so.
She had church office chores to take care of so couldn't hang out too long, although I think we could have yammered forever. Had a pleasant hug... the photo taken by Linda. [And, during our sharing, Linda was touched by Elizabeth and our hope is that Linda will attend their church.]
THEN when I left the coffee/tea shop a few minutes after she did, and I saw the flowers and the gorgeous sunlight, I knew in my heart I would never see these photos again without thinking of her.
It was a "God" thing. Ya see, my sister, Niki, and I were leaving her place about 60 miles west of Portland, OR, and taking I-5 towards Vancouver/Portland. It was a sunny, warm day... much different than the previous ones ... and we were having a nice drive.
We were going to Goldendale, WA, to see Berta.
I could drive on either side of the Columbia River. Bridges were in several places and easy to cross. However, for some reason, we stayed on the Washington side. I saw Multnomah Falls, and other falls, across the river, but still felt that staying in Washington was what should be done. The scenery was lovely and the driving --- curving and climbing -- was fun.
Around 2:00, Niki said it was time for lunch. [Doncha think she was right?] We were in the small town, Stevenson, and I didn't know where to stop. She suddenly, glancing down side streets, pointed to the right and said, "There." I parked and a small antique and cafe shop was by us. When we entered, we were the only ones to be served. Had a nice menu and nice food.
While eating, I glanced around and noticed that on both sides of the front door scriptures were artistically in place.
SO, I asked the lady who we thought was the owner... also the cooker ... why the verses were before our eyes.
We talked for a short time, and she, Robbie, casually mentioned having been with an organization called YWAM. Niki and I started rejoicing at her. We've both had so many friends and contacts involved in Youth With A Mission. She shared the locations she had been when younger and told us a number of stories.
Now she was a Mom with 4 kids and owned this store as an opportunity to take care of them and provide whatever was needed.
Before we left, after talking for more than half an hour [if for no other reason than I was there yammering with and for her] we prayed together, and Niki and I prayed especially that her business would expand sufficiently for her needs.
This whole experience fit into my spiritual motto: Right place, right time.
We know we were used to encourage her.
We loved it.
We continued east from there, through more small towns along the river, and reached Goldendale a bit later than our original plan. Why? We were used by God along the way.
The next day we drove over to the Oregon side of the Columbia. And it was raining, foggy, and not reasonable re: our timing to reach her house, since we left Berta's later than planned.
SO, for nearly the first in years, I did not stop at my favorite falls to listen, watch, walk and rejoice ... and grab a small rock or two. The hard-hearted portion wasbecause I knew this would probably be my final long drive out to the Northwest.
But Niki's instinct in her spirit, that this was the shop to be in,was so truthful, so right, so blessed.
Re: World Outreach Ministry Foundation ============= In the Fall of '94, when Dave and I had officially arrived to do whatever the Lord laid on our plate to serve Him in Uganda, we had no idea that Ron and Shirley were going to become dear ones. And I met Ron in one of the strangest ways of my life, but it certainly was the hand of God that put us together. I was wandering in downtown Kampala, learning where the grocery shops were and other business locations. I saw an Italian food store [is THAT a surprise? Sure was to me!] and I entered to see what they had on their shelves. After entering, I instantly saw a group of Ugandan men and an obvious Western tall-ish man and heard them praying loudly. Well, I couldn't ignore this, I walked to the back of the store, and saw that they were surrounding another White man, laying hands on him. I stood by the group and when they finished and said "Amen", I said it, too. I certainly got a pile of attention. When they finished helping the man they were praying for ... he was very sick and had somehow been left behind or aside from the small missions team he was involved with from US or Canada ... the main gentleman turned to me and introduced himself. His name is Ron DeVore. When I mentioned learning my way around the downtown area for good and honest food purchasing, he walked me all over and introduced me to shops and particular vegetable market places.
Then he drove me home and said he'd pick us up for church in the morning so we could attend theirs up on a high hill outside of town on the Entebbe Road. We went, met his wife, Shirley, and had a wonderful time with them. I've always laughed when I think of what Shirley said after church when we were being greeted and our hands shaken many, many times, always being greeting with "Praise the Lord". When walking into Ron and Shirley's living area, she led us to the kitchen and said it's time to wash our "Praise the Lord" hands.
They were leaving for the States for their break-time very soon, so our timing was perfect. Then, while talking to them about their background, another amazement kicked in. Ron and Shirley were from the Seattle-Tacoma area, which is where I was from. We had so much in common. They had been in Uganda since '86 and their ministry covered [and covers] so many needs: orphans, prisoners, poverty, medical necessities, schools. Some on the local land areas and some out in Lake Victoria. It has spread outside of Uganda over the years, too, to Sudan, Rwanda, Tanzania and other African nations, and even a time in Bangladesh. They spread and spread and spread some more depending on the needs. And more and more Western team members and local Ugandan pastors who have taken on so much. In '96, they asked Dave and I to step in to start a high school in the Soroti area, but we were preparing to head to the States, partly because we simply did not have the funding that we needed to survive over there. We also knew we needed to return to Omaha. I'm sure they found someone who was really good, but it was a blessing to be asked to create/take that job. We saw them here in the States a couple of times and stayed in their house overnight in Uganda in September, '99, when we were in their area for Sam and Adhe's wedding. That was the last time we saw each other. But never stopped following their lives on email...
One of my least favorite sleeping aspects..
stuck under the mosquito netting.
UNTIL I was on this trip to the Northwest a few weeks ago. I discovered through a newsletter that they were going to be in the Tacoma area at the same time I would be planning to head home -- but from Oregon, 130 miles south of their ministry area. But, how could I possibly leave without driving north and somehow getting together with them? [The hard part? Dave wasn't with me and they love him dearly and appreciate him. ... as we do them.] So many stories I could tell you about our time together in Uganda. They were a huge blessing to thousands of Ugandans... and a blessing to us because they were filled with a spirit of encouragement and poured and poured it on us. Loved them much. One funny thing: Ron always referred to me as a "young lady"... and I'm about 10 years younger than he is, and that's all. He always put me in Dave's age range ... nearly another 15 years younger than I am ... instead of my own age group. I had an hour with them for lunch in the Tacoma area before I hit the road for Omaha on November 2nd. To see them, hear their stories, and have a "family" time with them... not much else could bless me more. They won't be returning to Uganda until next summer ... physical issues of Ron's [eyes and ears].
In the meantime, they have so many people in the States and Uganda that are in control and doing good jobs, Ron and Shirley aren't overly concerned. They simply trust the Lord. And they did that in Seattle all those years ago before shifting to Uganda. As heart-trusting as anyone I've ever met. Ron and Shirley are a treat. A blessed-beyond-belief treat.
It is a good and delightful thing to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises [with musical accompaniment] to Your name,
O Most High.
This is Dave's CD. He and his dear musical friends, from different churches, different backgrounds, were no different in their desire to worship and praise and sing for the Lord.
When I was reading Psalms this morning, this was dropped into my eyes and my heart. I continue to feel blessed that I was part of this as a player and a writer.
THAT was an amazement for me.
And Dave is G..O..O..D!
I'm leaving town early, EARLY, in the morning for Chicago with/for Bhutanese. Nine-hour drive. Driving around Chicago neighborhoods scares me; haven't done it for years, didn't enjoy it then. So, please keep me in your heart when the Lord drops me in. Will reach home late Sunday afternoon. Believe me, that will be a BLESSED day for me. [And seeing my dear husband adds MORE blessings.]
What a blessed day it was. You see, back in 1960 I became friends with Delberta shortly after we moved to Klickitat.
Berta is a couple years younger than I am. Our parents were friends, too, so I saw her and her family often. One of the biggest blessings for me in Delberta was her skill in fixing hair. I WASN'T good at it [still not]. When there was a special event coming up, I would go down the street to her house and she could take a time to curl my straight, straight hair. What a treat!
I left Klickitat the day after I graduated in May, 1963. Rarely saw any friends there ever again. Except Susie. [And now others who have been dropped back into my life after all these years, which I'll post about soon.] Through Facebook, Berta and I became "friends" about 3 years ago. What a blessing to "see" her again and share news and notes. Even though I had driven out to the northwest a couple times since that FB contact, and was in her general area and we hoped to connect, it wasn't possible . With my timing, she'd always gone somewhere to be with kids or grandkids or great-grandkids. [BUTI was important enough to be put first, doncha think?] THEN this time, we arranged a visit. I could go to Goldendale, WA, which is about 20 miles up from the Columbia River.
She said I could bring a sister to spend the night. So, I took Niki with me.
We had a glorious visiting, sharing time.
As sad as it is, Berta's husband died of cancer last February. Of course, we talked about that heart-breaking event, and she always smiled while tearful. We were able to touch hands and hug, holding hearts.
A guitar was in the living room. That blessed Niki. She played it, one of her favorite things to do. Berta sings beautifully, as does Nik ... and the 3 of us sang hymns and worshiped and shared until about 1 AM.
[And why did I choose this post color, although it doesn't fit in perfectly? Her living room drapes and lovely vase and flowers. Couldn't not smile when I saw this.]
Had a lovely night and long blessed morning. Then her mom took this photos before we hit the road.
We reached Niki's house later that Tuesday afternoon, both of us filled with blessing. One wonderful part is that, in spite of the fact that they had never truly known each other before, Niki and Berta hope to stay in contact, and share music, and be friends. And, nearly 50 years later, Berta and I have again become good and dear friends. A true God-blessing. I couldn't be much happier.