“You are Lord of creation and Lord of my life.
Lord of the land and the sea.
You were Lord of the heavens before there was time
And Lord of all lords you will be.
On my way home from Raleigh Fitkin Memorial hospital in Manzini, I sang this song. Along with “When the Saints Go Marching In…” (Seriously, that was a bit far-fetched) and “You are Holy.”
Why? Because it’s true. And this Lord rocked my world again tonight.
If you follow my blog, you may remember my previous attempts at working myself into the Labour Ward.
Re-cap: more than FIVE, reliable, trustworthy, nothing-to-gain-by-it folks told me “Stay away from the Labour Ward.” And “Don’t trouble yourself with it.” And “It’s best to wait for the nurses to initiate a doula program, it wouldn’t be good to try changing things unless the nurses want it.” “Those labour nurses are territorial.” A grim picture their recommendations painted for me.
But there’s this need I’ve heard of – better help in the Labour Ward. And there’s this heart that God’s been growing in me for the educationally impoverished folks (remember Newark?) and recently that swelling heart had the ache for uneducated women to know about, love, understand, and respect the power of their bodies in childbirth. And of course for those same women to know this redeeming, incredible, grace-filled YHWH who brings us into wild situations. Situations like closed labour wards…
Knowing I wouldn’t be allowed into the Labour Ward to help her deliver, I proposed my doula services to a woman working for a friend. She accepted. A whole ‘mother story later, I end up with her laboring outside the Infamous Ward at 2 AM. And being asked to leave by one of the Dreaded Nurses once they admitted Mom, but sneaking the Mom some food & her blanket, and some cookies to the Labour Ward Nurses.
Today, I got a phone call. From Futsi. A nurse at the Ward. She invited me to visit her at work. Tonight I went. And crossed the threshold, passed the nurses station and around a laboring soon-to-be-mom. A colleague joined her. They inquired all about what I know and recommend for doulas. You see, another Christian, friend, and doctor recommended the hospital implement doulas. In fact he was working on this before I ever trained to become a doula. But the program hadn’t sprouted yet; however the prospect of a program AND the need I’d heard of prompted me to embark on a doula training.
The two women/nurses?/shift managers? Spoke of UNICEF proposals, presenting a doula program to their management, giving my contact info to management, me training doulas (which I’m not qualified for, but I’m honored they’d consider me), and how else I may be involved.
Wow. Wow. Wow.
After we promised to be in touch, Futsi walked me out. I expressed to her my excitement to be invited and “I’m grateful for the opportunity to work with you.” I also added, “I heard you didn’t have a program, so I’m excited to learn you have one, or are starting one.”
Futsi turned to me and said, “You have a program.”
“We have a program.
Yes, Lord, it seems we may have a doula program after all. You know I’m crazy enough to try & excited enough to work night shifts in a foreign language. I know You’re present, because you’re omnipotent. But it’s so neat to see You here, and I’m grateful. Scared. Excited. Giddy. Thrilled. And resting in the knowing of your Goodness
And my souls wells up with Hallelujahs…