(This is another e-mail update from Meagan that came the day after her last update posted here on October 23. I have included pictures of Cathy, the little four year old who has captured Meagan's heart. Cathy just had a birthday!)
I just wanted to tell you that the baby we took to the orphanage last night from the HIV mother died last night about an hour after I sent that e-mail to all of you. She started bleeding out of the nose and the mouth, and then she just stopped breathing. Mama and I took the baby to the police station at 5:30 this morning to fill out the Brought In Dead form, and they didn't even ask to see the baby or anything, or check to see it was who we said it was. Things like that never cease to amaze me. We went straight to Kalomo Hospital where we had to tell the mother and grandmother that the baby they had just entrusted to us yesterday hadn't even made it through the night. The mother looked like she wouldn't even make it a few more hours, and all the nurses there told us how shocked they were the baby even made it through the delivery. We couldn't even tell the mother that the baby had died because the nurses and grandmother said it was too risky in her condition. So I went back to the orphanage to pick up the gardeners to come dig the grave. I called Louisa and Christy, and they came up with part of the Harding group. The grandmother took the baby to the grave and placed her in. We sang some songs and read about how King David responded when he lost his son too early. Apparently you aren't supposed to cry here if your baby only lives one day because that is bad luck. It means you won't ever be able to have a baby again, so there was no crying. After the funeral, we went back to the ward to say goodbye to the mother. She wasn't really coherent. The grandmother just kept patting her own heart saying how bad it all hurt, losing her daughter and her grand baby. The husband of the dying woman has four other wives, and the grandmother thinks they are all infected, too. Sometimes I can't believe it all. We came home from the burial to find Olivia not doing so well. Neither of the twins wants to suck today, and we are a bit worried about them. Please pray for them if you will.
I love you guys lots and lots.
E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org