This was a great experience for me that I will never forget. I expected that Gloria and I would have to walk pretty far to get to the houses where the pregnant women lived. However, I was shocked at first because it seemed like a pregnant woman lived in every house on one street, and we didn't have to walk very far at all. At every house, Gloria asked the expecting mothers why they haven't been coming to the controls and told them to take the vitamins once a day. I was surprised that many of the women seemed like they had never taken vitamins before and had many questions about how and when to take them. This is something that is very hard for us to understand, but we have to remember that in the U.S., taking vitamins (especially during pregnancy) is a normal practice. But think about all the resources we have that contribute to our habit of taking a daily vitamin: (1) we have access to the vitamins (2) we have water to take them with (3) we have the education to know why it is important (4) we are used to routine. These are all things that the women here just don't have. After taking all this into account, I realized how hard it is to cross all of these barriers to get the women to simply take a vitamin a day. However, all the women were very grateful for the vitamins and seemed like they were going to take them. We can just hope and pray that they will!
I brought about 15-20 bottles of vitamins with me and we passed out all but one. The women ranged in ages from 17 to 40 and were in different stages of their pregnancy. We also passed out handouts that Dr. Campos gave me about possible complications during pregnancy and gestational diabetes.
Gloria and I ended up having to take a treck up a mountain to reach one of the houses, and I thought we were going to get eaten by los perros at one point! Heres a picture of Gloria and the dogs that almost ate us for lunch:
So....after that, we stopped at a little store on the top of the mountain to treat ourselves to an Inca Cola. I think Gloria was really appreciative of the prenatal vitamins, and asked if I want to make house visits with her again on Tuesday. I'm also going with her the next two Fridays that I'm here!
I feel so blessed by everything I saw yesterday. I was amazed at how grateful the women were for something as simple as vitamins. It reminded me how little the people have here and reminded me not to take anything for granted.
Thanks for reading! and thanks for the prayers too. God is good!