Saturday, July 2, 2011


Yesterday morning I was at the hospice and we started off by doing wound care on the two patients we had changed dressings for on Wednesday. This time we knew what we were doing so we were able to work faster and more efficiently. After we were done with the dressings, I got to do something that I have only ever done in the lab at Marquette; I got to place a Nasogastric feeding tube! It was for a man who has pneumonia and is nearing the end of life. He wasn’t in a coma but he couldn’t really open his eyes and he didn’t move besides his chest with each breath. Even though he couldn’t do much with resisting me, his body definitely did. I was so used to placing these tubes through the nose of the mannequins in the lab and just sliding all the way down. I had gotten about an inch in when he started coughing and gagging. I had to maneuver the tube so it would curve around the back of his throat, which was something I usually never had to worry about on the mannequins. It was a painful couple minutes, not only for the patient, but for myself because I felt so bad putting him through so much pain. I know that is something I will have to face every day in my career, but it is never easy the first time you do it.
We also sat down with Coco one of the other hospice nurses and talked with her for a long time. She mentioned to us about how sad she was when her first patient died on her and how she felt guilty. This really made me excited about my teaching project because I was planning on teaching the hospice nurses about how to cope with grief and death. I am going to have to work hard this next week to make sure that my project is SUPER great for these wonderful women who work such long hours at the hospice and have to deal daily with grief and death.
In the afternoon we went to Vida Nueva, the men’s drug and alcohol rehab center, for Marianne’s teaching project. She talked to them about having a low self-esteem and how to overcome it. They were really intrigued and really listened to what she said! She definitely set the standards really high for the rest of us!
This morning we started off by touring the public hospital here in Piura. It is a lot bigger and nicer than the one where we have our clinical. There were lots of mothers giving birth, so we got to see lots of babies, some even only hours old! None of the women have private rooms, no cribs for the babies (all babies sleep in the bed with the mom), and the longest women stay after they give birth is 24 hrs! In the U.S, most women even with perfectly normal pregnancies are in the hospital for at least two days! I am learning so much about this culture and even though it is very different from the U.S, it works for them. 
Here I am with one of the babies, only a couple hours old!

 Right before lunch, we went to one of the markets about a ten minute walk from the parish. It is basically rows, upon rows of outdoor stands that sell everything from luggage suitcases to fresh meat. (Yes, I saw many beaks, hooves, claws, etc). We were warned before we went that there are pickpockets and to be very careful because Dr.Weis (the other professor) had her earrings stolen right off of her ears one of the first years they went! Luckily, we all made it out what we went in with but I quickly realized how easily one could get pickpocketed in such a crowded space. Obviously we are white, have blonde and brown hair and stand out to most Peruvians. We get looks but today it was the worse it has ever been. I have never felt so many eyes on me before, not only do we look the complete opposite of the people, we are about 4-5 inches taller than most so we REALLY stick out when walking in a huge crowd of Peruvians. The entire time I was walking amongst the hoards of people, I thought about how Ryan or Uncle Dave Rapien would be TOWERING over these people. For probably the first time in my life I was in the racial minority and I did not like it one bit. I can’t imagine how people live with all the staring eyes for the entirety of their lives.
This evening, Sacramento Santisimo had their own parish procession of the Blessed Sacrament for Corpus Christi. It was the same deal as what happened this past Sunday, but with less people, and this time, we had to walk the ENTIRE WAY. Another thing the parish did special was that they made these beautiful colored sawdust pictures on the road. The walk took us about three and a half hours! And after about the first 45 minutes, I either was holding the hands of four or five kids, or physically carrying one in my arms. So I am very tired to say the least and am ready for a great night sleep.
Here are two of the sawdust images. I wanted to take a picture of all of them as we passed, but I guess once the Blessed Sacrament walked over them, then everyone else could as well!  

 Here is the beginning of the procession.
 My four little friends and I that I made on our walk.

This upcoming week is most likely going to get very busy due to the fact we have to start working on our big aggregate project and finish our teaching projects. So I apologize in advance if I am not able to update my blog as frequently. Send me e-mails, Facebook messages, etc and I will try to respond to those first! Sending my love and blessings to the States

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