First of all, I’m ok now. 🙂 I’ve been taking the Kopp kids advice and getting well soon…
Saturday Chris and I hiked a nearby mountain with a group of friends.
Yesterday I stayed home from church with some tummy issues – not muscle issues as I would have expected from hiking! I couldn’t pinpoint anything I’d eaten but tummy bugs are fairly common here so I wasn’t too worried about it. Chris went to church without me (at my insistence) but within an hour or so I was in pretty extreme pain that was getting worse. Chris came home and took me almost immediately to a clinic recommended to us by a nurse from church because they have an American doctor there and the clinic is Seventh Day Adventist so they would be more open on a Sunday. 🙂
The doctor came to see me after getting blood drawn and an exam from a Malawian doctor there and it seemed certain that I had appendicitis.
Hospitals here are not like American hospitals (probably the understatement of the year) and usually expats who need any kind of invasive surgery require an emergency transport to South Africa. But the doctor suggested we do it here, right away. Also, he is a skilled surgeon, had a clean (and brand new) operating room and was able to do it immediately. Due to some of my other medications, I would have been more likely to have a rupture had we waited for transport to South Africa and that would have been bad news. We got to the clinic around 1:30 pm and I was in surgery before 3:30. The surgery took almost 2 hours but he was able to remove my inflamed and angry appendix and clean up the area. Some of the CAPA men and ladies came to be with Chris during the surgery and brought us food for that night and prayed with us – and they got to see my appendix (so lucky for them!). I slept well last night at the clinic… no beeping heart rate monitors to keep me awake or noisy roommates or loud nurses (nurses did check on me, don’t worry)… And I’m recovering well so far! It’s amazing how fast everything happened but we are so thankful to God for his provision for my care here.
Please pray for my continued recovery and that there wouldn’t be any complications or infections. Pray for CAPA as well as Chris will be mostly staying home a few days with me this week and it is the start of a new module. Jim, the president of CAPA, has been so kind and supportive with covering for Chris and making sure he is able to take care of me. And the whole CAPA team has been incredibly helpful with bringing us meals and praying for us and helping with other practical needs.
It certainly wasn’t an adventure that we would have chosen but we see God at work in it. The clinic we went to isn’t one that we would have even known to go to apart from a referral by a nurse at our church here, the doctor was compassionate and thorough, they had an operating room, and being here let our CAPA friends help us – we seriously feel so loved by everyone! We get to sleep in our own bed tonight. And, kinda funny to say it, but it was cheaper to get it done here and pay cash than it would have been to have it in the US with insurance. Plus, I get a permanent reminder of our time in Malawi every time I look at my belly in the future. 🙂 God is good to us!