These are the glory [to glory] days.

Standard

Me, I am not one for planning things. On the other hand, the “go with the flow” and “fly by the seat of your pants” lifestyle is stress city for me. In life I generally find myself settling somewhere in the middle. I generally know what I am doing tomorrow, but a year down the road is pushing it.

So, a year and a half ago when I started this journey with YWAM and midwifery I felt like GOLD because the next season of my life had a plan! I knew what I was doing and while it was quite foreign…I liked it! But then months have passed, a year is gone and now and I am in the final countdown (cue song) of this “plan” and the time came to figure out what was next.

While I do consider Fullerton to be my home, I didn’t have a job or place to go back to so I decided to go back to Colorado until I figured out my next step. This process caused a bit more anxiety then I care to try to articulate.

As God does, he took care of it all. I was in my routine of asking, “hey God, any chance you’d like to tell me what is next in my life…or should I just continue to wait it out?” And then I felt him say, “what do you like about what you’re doing, Erin?”

If I remember correctly, that day had been particularly NOT awesome. And I felt like saying, “Uh, NOTHING. This is hard, and I don’t wanna!” But then I put on my big girl pants and really thought about it. God didn’t send me here because, “uh NOTHING!” I really don’t think it is his style. So I tought, and this is what I came up with.

I like being with women. I like educating and teaching. I like to bring comfort and peace. I like praying and seeing God answer. I like being in awe of life and the development of it all. I like celebrating. I like serving. I like anticipating needs (and sometimes getting it right!). I like learning. I like trying new things. I like holding hands and rubbing backs. I like being involved in the story God is authoring. I like mom’s with drama and attitude. I like answering questions. I like reassuring and bringing confidence. I like wrapping babies like burritos. I like seeing little ones take their first breath and transition into life outside the womb. I like when mom’s meet their babies for the first time. I like documenting these stories with words and photos. I like singing for mothers. I like talking about their pregnancy. I like when praying for unborn babies and seeing them ALWAYS move in response to the Holy Spirit. I like a lot more things than I thought I did.

Grateful for the reminder, I asked God “what do I do with these things?” And he led me to something so special and intimate.

Being a Doula (or birth coach).

So that is what’s next. I am moving back to Grand Junction, Colorado. I am going to live with my brother (never thought I would say that…but I am really excited). I am going to get my Doula certification and offer my services as a photographer at the same time. I am also going to work part-time in the loveliest baby store downtown (which in itself if a Godsend and the most precious answer to prayer).

Ultimately, I am going to be with women. I am going to educate and teach them. I am going pray and celebrate and learn and serve! I am going to share stories, and life and use my gifts to be a blessing. Thank you for all who have been so faithful to pray with and for me in this season. I am so excited to continue in the field of mother and child health and look forward to see what God will do with it in the future.

This season of being trained as a midwife has certainly had its rough patches. I cried (a lot) and was ready to give up and let feelings of stress and inadequacy take over. But I did my best and stood as firm as I could, even when my feet felt like jello beneath me. I feel proud of what I’ve accomplished and take pride in what I am able to do next. This life is beautiful. It’s bittersweet knowing this season in this context is coming to a close. No matter how hard the struggle or the day, the truth is, these are the glory days. And there are more glory days ahead!

HydIndia-1

Advertisements

My girl.

Standard

miaThis sweet one has my heart. All babies are so special and precious. Boy or girl, these little ones have significance and value. Unfortunately the reality we see here often is that babies girls are not as celebrated. The responsibility of having a daughter is tremendous in this society and sometimes the weight of that is heavy on some of the mothers once they discover they have given birth to [another] daughter. Of course we celebrate, pray and drool over the perfect creation God has made in each child. We encourage the mother to show the same affection, but today my heart was burdened when this angel didn’t receive the love she deserved. God has her eyes on this one…an extra measure of care from her Heavenly Father. I prayed and got the name, Mia, for her. Rightly so it means, “mine.” Little one, you belong to the one who matters most! I will celebrate that forever and prayer you are discovered to be the treasure I see you as! XOXO

Most Excellent

Standard

yasmeenYa wanna hear the most excellent story?! The mother on the left is my new friend, Yasmin. A few weeks ago God healed her of her vision problems and headache that were indications of the condition she was being hospitalized for. Recently she told me that her last scan showed her baby’s back was not developing properly. Her baby had spina bifida, and her husband was trying to convince her to abort the baby. Before I left she grabbed my hand and said, “please remember to pray for my baby everyday.” I was touched at her recognition of how powerful prayer was. Today I went to visit her and Mobina, the cutie in the middle, said she had been discharged. Her last scan showed the baby was fine!!!! Are you serious!? God, your miracles never cease to amaze me.

Perfect.

Standard

senaThis week we were able to assist in THE BEST delivery. In the hospital, if women have any sort of infectious disease or virus they are put in the “septic ward” for their labor and delivery to avoid the spread of infection. Unfortunately, these women are often left to labor alone and are rarely checked on by the staff. This first time mother was young and afraid and I feel so blessed that our team was able to support and educate her during her labor. I was absolutely amazed by her. At the time of delivery she was so strong and brave. As soon as her baby boy made his arrival she just held him and wept. She grabbed my hand and said, “they were just going to leave me here alone…but you came. You are my angels.” Gah! I had to cry too, knowing that she wasn’t wrong. Fear has put a boundary up in this place and these women often don’t get the care they need. I thank God we were able to be there for this sweet time. Perfect love casts out fear, and I pray this hospital will be marked and transformed by this perfect love. The next day we were able to visit her and she, along with the rest of the women in the septic ward, gave their lives to Christ. Perfect love is powerful, you guys.

Life…

Standard

lucy

Life. One small word that holds so much weight. Today was really tough. We mourned the loss of one life. Prayed hope for another. Fought a physical, emotional and spiritual battle for the life of a mother. And then celebrated the arrival of new life still. One day…so much life in many different varieties. At the end of the day, we pray and commit ALL life to the one who authors it. This tension of celebration and sorrow is not easy…

Back at it.

Standard

labor wardFinally back in the labor room this week and I am feeling…apprehensive!? I am going through photos from Zambia trying to reacquaint myself with the mechanics of it all but then I remember, this isn’t going to be familiar. God is doing a new thing here. The hospital is so different, the lifestyles are new, the Drs and nurses are strangers. There is no room to compare. However, what does remain the same is that God is faithful, He is with us and He is the author of these NEW stories! Oh! and babies need to come out…that is also the same. Mothers of Hyderabad, let’s do this! I am gunna catch yo babies. Also, if you get too hot and feel like the only thing that will bring you relief is if I dump water on you, then so be it!

Clinic

Standard

Shortly after we arrived in Kolkata we had a really special opportunity to do basic health care clinics in a slum just a short train ride away from our place.

We set up a rotation where people were able to received visual acuity testing, blood pressure checks and a general care station where we were able to advise people on a wide range of common ailments. But what we mostly did, was pray.

We went with really basic health training (some more then others…I am on the ‘not so much’ side of the scale) but more importantly, we went with hearts that knew the love God has for these lovely sons and daughters.

I will keep this post short, and let the photos attempt to tell the rest!

clinicIndia-8

clinicIndia-13

clinicIndia-4

clinicIndia-18   clinicIndia-34

clinicIndia-49

clinicIndia-91   clinicIndia-92

clinicIndia-94

clinicIndia-71

clinicIndia-20

clinicIndia-41

clinicIndia-39   clinicIndia-38

clinicIndia-80 clinicIndia-98