I went to the orphanage yesterday and found out that Akim was sick again. He was very lethargic and would not make eye contact. His chest was working pretty hard and he had the IV port in his arm again. Poor little guy. It was so sad. I held him a little and he wouldn't smile and just kind of looked off in the distance.
When I saw one of the head ladies come in, I asked her about him. She said, it was sad, he was a hard case. Then she said something about TB medicine should be given at 2 months and then they start the ARV's after that. He is around 9 months old. So I am not sure if she was saying the medicines were not given soon enough so they are trying to do what they can. Then she pointed to two other tiny little girls on the other side of the room, mentioning they too are on ARV's and the medicine. I asked if they had moms and she said no, they died. One is real tiny, can't be more than a couple months old and the other was 9 months but looked about 3.
ARV's are given when an individual is HIV positive. The assumption than can be made that Akim and these other girls have the disease.
I held the girl from the village and sang to her. She looked at me the whole time with her big brown eyes. Her mom is still in the hospital and is maybe slightly better. I asked what the mom had and was told, stomach TB. I really have not learned what that is yet, but know it has something to do with the stomach being extended out. She too seems malnourished.
I always have mixed emotions being there. I look forward to going and seeing the kids and how they are doing. Then when I am there I am glad to see them and hold, feed, sing, pray with them. But I always have a sinking feeling leaving. At times, I am glad when none of the babies are crying. That means they are doing ok. Other times when I really think about it... that they are not crying means that they are used to being in a crib all day long and not having any individual attention. That is just as sad as hearing them crying when you put them back or when they want to get out.
When I left I went back to Akim's crib and talked to him a few minutes. He finally looked at me and held onto my finger with his little hand, and he gave me a smile.
So many things to pray for!
And this is just one room of one orphanage in one area of one city in one country, on one continent that is full of orphans!