Monday, May 21, 2012

Why short term missionaries are GOOD for long term missionaries

There's quite the heated debate going in the world of missions right now. Do short term missionaries (STM) cause more harm than good? Books like "When Helping Hurts" and others weigh in on the matter. Some argue that without the history and relationships, STMs can sometimes unwittingly undermine the work of the long term missionaries (LTM), not to mention the effort and time it takes an LTM to host STMs. But this is not a blog post on the pros and cons of STMs. (FYI, I am pro STM when it's done right.)

From a purely selfish standpoint, this IS a blog on the perks of having a short term missionary. Lori came in late January and stayed with me for 4 months: four months of hilarity, late nights, an unending pile of data entry, popcorn, lots (and I mean LOTS) of Coke Zero, and so much more.

Part of any STM's stay should be a chance to see the beauty of the country they are visiting. We can't just lambast them with the poverty and difficulties of the culture, even if that's where we spend 99.9% of our time. An LTM should take the opportunity to take the STM to see some positive aspects that are present in each and every culture and country.

Here's how you make sure your STM has fun:
You go jumping off a waterfall (Bunga Falls)

You go canoeing up a river through a jungle for an hour and a half... see another waterfall (Pagsanjan Falls)
You see the Guiness Book of World Records qualifying spin of the world's largest top

You take them to see the world's smallest active volcano. Incidentally, it's an island within a lake, within a volcano, within a lake, within a (extinct) volcano, with an ocean

If you have a staff team-building day, bring the STM with!
And every STM needs a debriefing retreat...and if you're in a country consisting of 7,100+ islands, the beach is a must
If parasailing costs the same as a meal at TGI Fridays, then by all means... (first for me, too!)
And view as many gorgeous sunsets as possible while at said beach debriefing retreat
For the record, we DID do work...and lots of it. Lori single-handedly entered and scanned over 3,500 medical records, accounting for over 7,000 deliveries at our birthing home. That's nothing to sneeze at! Data entry, folks. Tedious, mind-numbing, cross-eye causing data entry.

Thanks so much for all your hard work, Lori! We miss you already. And thanks for giving me the excuse to put down the stethoscope and fetal doppler to get out and see some of the gorgeous country I live in.

Friday, May 4, 2012

How to Ultrasound, Pami Style

Now that the beautiful ultrasound machine is up and running, I'd thought I'd give you a pictorial of how I roll.
I'm so blessed to get to be the first person to use the new building! They finished this basement room early so I could have a place to do ultrasounds and house all our records (thousands of them!!)

Makeshift exam bed. Please notice the lovely privacy curtains that I designed, bought fabric for (including netting), and had made. :)

Gooping up the belly

Such an amazingly clear picture!! (baby's head is to left, rump to right)

Next purchase is a small monitor so the mama doesn't have to crick her neck to see!

Showing the mama her baby

going over results

Documenting results on her prenatal record

I always close in prayer...

...thanking God for the mama, her new baby, and for wisdom as we care for her

Afterwards at midmorning break, we sit around and discuss life and interesting patients

The end.