Wednesday, September 14, 2011


so, there is a distinct possibility I may be arrested when I return
to the US.

It turns out, that tags expire on cars every year. Who knew

and, you can receive a court date for that. who knew.

AND, that once given an October court date (although having spun my
whole, I won't be in the country in October lie),
the officer has 6 WEEKS to turn it in.

So, I am not in anyone's computer system. No court clerk can find my
court date, and therefore there is no way to dispute it before I leave.

Also, it turns out, that its a bad idea to lose your court date
slip.....because now I can't hire a lawyer to show up on that date......

so, i have just resigned myself to the fact that when I return from my
endeavors, the police may be waiting with open arms.........

there is so much more involved to leaving the country than I ever imagined.

extra passport pictures, backing up files and pictures, buying unlocked
phones and converters,

figuring out how to take everything within luggage requirements,
figuring out how much money i need, getting that money into

crisp $100.00 bills, sorting and packing and giving things to the
goodwill, closing this account and that account, POA's and advance

and my first attempt at a will (consisting mostly of my funeral
playlist...i can't help it), getting that notarized, packing medical
supplies, saying goodbye to everyone, this is just a small list off the
top of my head that is literally just a sliver of all I have to do.

and I'm not complaining - I'm glad to go, this is just my first
immersion into the adult sphere of paperwork and red tape, and I wonder
why I wanted to grow up so fast.


I have also learned that there are high expectations pinned on my
arrival because I am their only volunteer with hospital experience.

this knowledge makes me so anxious and I can't stop thinking about what
I can do and how I can act so I don't let them down.

Sure, I have worked in a hospital for the last 2 years, but I have no
experience starting IV's, I do not know French, I know only minimal
information about pediatrics and OB, and tropical medicine.

I am suddenly wishing I had payed more attention in my classes, actually
learned the language, and oh possibly studied up on their common
diseases more.

and, i have received the impression that they want me to help increase
the standard of nursing care.

That terrifies me, considering my gameplan was to arrive with humility
and my objective was to learn.


I am going to try to set measurable goals for my self.


3 moths in - working knowledge of French and work on my own
6 months in - acheive competence at working on my own.
9 moths in - have researched and planned ways to improve standard of care
12 months in - have implemented several changes in the nursing
department that increases pt. care.

so, i'm sure all this worrying will be obsolete soon as the challenges
will be much different than I can imagine, but I am pretty much feeling
as unprepared as one could ever be.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

.you will

this is a letter we received from the Md's that run the hospital.

"Mostly, I would like for you to tell them all the worst things about
life here:

You will see immense suffering that you can do nothing about here, which
would be easily treated in the states.

You will hold babies and adults while they draw their last breaths. You
will have fallen in love with many of them beforehand.

You will spend months in a sweltering hut, unable to escape the heat and
the sweat.

You will be hungry most days, fighting with a bunch of little kids twice
a day for scraps of unappetizing food.

You will work long hours.

You will be asked to do construction, maintenance, plumbing, childcare,
English teaching, computer work, filing, sorting, inventory, pharmacy
work, OR work, etc.... probably all in the same week. It will often be
menial and boring.

You will need to be flexible and roll with the punches.

You will need to be able to laugh at yourself.

You will need to be outgoing.

You will need to be independent.

You will need to understand that there are no hand holders here to get
you through hard times.

You will get sick as a dog...initially fearing for your life...then
fearing you'll survive.

You will vomit.

You will have pain, both physical and emotional.

pretty much, just be honest.