Thursday, November 15, 2012

help our hearts to hear Your sound

Song: Slow Me Down
By Robbie Seay

 Slow us down Lord, slow us down. 
 Help our hearts to hear your sound.
Speak into our lives - Lord speak now.
Slow us down oh Lord, slow us down.
Clear our minds. Bring us peace that we cannot find.
Take our worried thoughts, break our pride.
Clear our minds, oh Lord, clear our minds.
Wake our souls oh Lord, wake our souls...

Thursday (as you likely know) is Prenatal day at 
Heartline Ministries.  

On a typical Thursday we all gather to pray before we begin. We pray about personal stuff and for the ladies. We pray that our interactions with each person will be loving and respectful. 45 women come each week. Today there seemed to be extra sad things going on in their lives. Crying is often times seen as weakness here. It is not uncommon for people to scold one another for tears. (As opposed to some of us expats that cry a time or two every day and see it as cheaper than Visine and therapy.) This Thursday both Haitians and Americans were teary. It was a heavy day. 

  • Met with new gal in the program  - 13 years old. (turns 14 at Christmas) She is brave and strong. She has no toes and only a few fingers, she was born without them. She was raped a few months ago and is going to have a baby in early April. She has decided to travel a very far distance to come to the program.
  • Did the intake tests and physical exam on a 20(?) year old with significant cognitive disabilities. Emotionally she responds at a level similar to that of six year old. She is able to answer a few questions, but not most. She says when her mom is not home, a man forces her.  She is due in May.
  • Prenatal visit with a 16 year old (was written about here) that is clearly so abused she has trouble engaging well. She had preterm labor last week (but is much better now thanks to treatment) due to multiple infections that are likely caused by the abuse we think is probably still happening to her. She is due in December.
  • Talked with a 42 year old woman pregnant with her 8th child. We grieved with her as she explained that her husband has left them and was treating her terribly. The whole family lives in one of the remaining "tent cities". She has children ranging in age from 5 to 20. She has a complicated medical history. She has very high blood pressure but only took the medicine for a time and stopped when the blood pressure got better. :(  Her pregnancy and delivery are high risk. She'll need to deliver at a hospital. 
  • Mom of six week old baby came to talk to us. She hid her face behind her baby while she cried and said she needs a job and a way to make money. She doesn't know how to keep going the way it is now. 
That's 5 complicated lives out of 45 complicated lives.  When listening to story after story it sometimes causes a feeling of despair. I confess that I perceive a distant God after a few of these stories in a row. The desperation feels suffocating. 

The need to grasp tightly to hope is apparent. 
The ability to grasp tightly to hope varies. 

It also occurs to me that I am depressed by all of this and I am not the one daily living that horror.  I cannot imagine how it would feel to be the one being raped, being left by my husband, and desperately needing work.

Last week I shared (on FaceBook) at a vulnerable moment that everything feels heavy right now and that we're struggling in a few different areas of our lives and we are feeling it in our home and relationships. As soon as I posted it I felt my pride telling me to take it down and not to put that information out there.

This space has always been the place we honestly process Haiti stuff and life as a large family in a second culture ... And the ups and downs of almost everything. I don't know why we're in a slump, we just are. I don't know why our coping mechanisms are not in their best form, they just aren't. 

My friend reminded me that this song was our supposed anthem for 2012; seems like we kinda forgot about it.  And so we pray together ...  Slow us down, Lord. Help our hearts to hear your sound.