Friday, June 29, 2012

A time to reflect.

Today, is my concluding blog post; it is also the day I fly away from Piura a changed person. It’s hard to believe that somewhere between my first repeat ER experience, the Corpus Christi procession, and editing the final touches on my aggregate project, the entire month has passed by. In so many ways, Peru has become my home away from home. We have a routine here; health care professionals we have begun to emulate, an unforgettable faith-filled environment, and hundreds of extraordinary people who we have encountered. Words cannot express how Peru has moved my spirit, but I hope that the following will give you a little insight into the beauty I have had the opportunity to encounter on a daily basis. 

Thank you to all of you who have supported me through my journey and kept me in your prayers for the last month. You have no idea how much your encouragement and love has contributed to my fulfilling abroad experience. 

Peace. Love. Piura. 2012

Thursday, June 28, 2012

A Jesuit Connection

Saint Ignatius of Loyola, All-Boys School: The Marquette nursing students were invited to “Colegio San Ignacio de Loyola” to meet and interact with students at a private Jesuit institution. The boys ranged from 3yrs-16yrs (seniors in high school). It was a beautiful facility and very comparable to an American high school campus. The boys enjoyed practicing their English with us; one even went so far as to say he was “very nerv-i-s because of all of the beautiful girls.” 

The campus from the front.

The pool

8-9 year old classroom

The computer lab 

Football and Cake.

San Francisco 49ers, Jim Harbaugh: Who would have thought that I would meet someone famous in Piura, Peru? Well, apparently, Padre Joe has some pretty well known connections in the US including the coach of the year, Jim Harbaugh. Jim (yes, first name basis) and several of his friends/brother-in-laws came to Santisimo Sacramento for some volunteer work – and I was chosen to help work at a football camp/bible study with them. I got designated to the arts and crafts table, but here are some pictures from the football game too:

Riding in the pick-up with Jim! 

The Boys

Erika’s 30th Birthday Celebration: Monday was Erika’s birthday and we threw her a good-old-fashioned American party on Sunday night with pizza, cake, and soda!  Erika was very emotional and I think the party was a huge success. 

The family in their new MU gear

The whole family!

Kiara and her cake. 


Eye Clinic: A group based out of Oklahoma came to stay at the parish and host a cataract eye surgery clinic. There were approximately 6 surgeons and MDs, 2 scrub nurses, several med-techs, and many other pre-op/post-op helpers. As nursing students we had the opportunity to participate in the pre-op process, or sterilize equipment (my job). I was in the OR on Wednesday and held the very important position of manning the autoclave with Kelly. “Without us, the surgeries wouldn’t be possible” (a direct quote from Dr. Clifford) – aka I was pretty special.  At the end of the day, I was able to observe one of the surgeries and it was SO fascinating! Eye surgery is such an intricate specialty; I really gained a lot of appreciation for their work. 

my babies: the autoclaves

the surgical room (3 surgeries could be performed simultaneously) 

Dr. Jesse (maroon scrub top) is known as the "rockstar" because he could perform surgery in 15 minutes)  

If you are wondering what it is that you are looking at, it is Dr. Rockstar inserting a numbing agent into the patients eye - with a needle. 

yes, that's me in the OR carrying the instruments

The entire eye team. 
Observing the surgery

The cataract graveyard

Final Clinical Days

Family-to-Family Package Deliveries: There is a social program here at the parish where US families can “adopt” Piuran families in need and send them food, clothing, and housing provisions several times a year. Vanessa and I had the opportunity to deliver some of the packages to these families and it was, as you can see, very special.  Once I become a full-fledged RN, I hope to adopt a family for myself (which may or may not mean I will be returning here someday in the future…). 

The contents of one opened package

Two precious kids receiving a box

A beautiful family (check out the hair on the little one)

A grateful couple

Monday, June 18, 2012

So, once again I'm behind. Whoops. Here's the latest and greatest from this past week. 

1. I made my second trip to the ER - didn't touch any ampules, but definitely spied them. 

2. I went back to the hospice center for the first time since Quiche moved home (my favorite and most memorable Peruvian from last year). Vanessa and I even had a "shadow" student! Let me explain: last week, there was a group of high school students from California working as missionaries here at Sacramento Santisimo.  One of their chaperones, named Matt, had just recently begun applying to nursing school and asked if he could come watch some nursing students in action; thus, Vanessa and I were chosen to show him the ropes. While there we took vitals, fed several patients through their NG tubes, suctioned a trach, and gave some massages. Needless to say, we didn't scare him off. Since last year the hospice has acquired a mascot - a 1 month old kitten! I was in heaven. 

3. On Sunday, we were given the day off and traveled 45 minutes to the ocean for a day at the beach. It was a highly enjoyable way to avoid homework and get some sunshine. We even had the opportunity to try the Peruvian alcoholic drink called a Pisco Sour, which had a very similar taste to a margarita - muy delicioso! Cheers to you dad, Happy (belated) Father's Day.

As they say, hasta luego!

I still get a little queasy looking at these guys...
my baby (Amy, this one's for you)

the world's cutest kitten
checking some vitals
a much needed vaca 

a pisco sour

my roommates

until next time...