Tuesday, January 10

Hello everyone! Emma here! Today we were back at Bugando Hospital to do another total knee replacement surgery! We got to the OR and had one operation today. Olivia started her first catheter today… yay! Once we prepped our patient for the procedure, we got everyone scrubbed in and ready to go. I scrubbed in today to assist Dr. Sutton and we were accompanied by many other members of the Tanzanian team! We all learned from each other today. Dr. Sutton got used to a new total knee system and did an excellent job of guiding the Tanzanian doctors on how to do total knees. I learned a ton about how a total knee procedure works and enjoyed getting to learn more of the surgical instruments and how orthopedic surgeries work. Olivia observed the surgery today and Gayle kept things running in the OR.

We had one mishap today. We were originally going to have two surgical patients today; however, after examining our equipment, we realized that we didn’t have a part that one of our patients needed. We had to switch trajectories and postponed that patient to tomorrow so that we can get the part that the patient needs. We were reminded about the importance of remaining flexible in Tanzania and trusting in God’s plan as he leads us and guides us each day. Overall, our day in the OR was an excellent learning and teaching experience. Our legs are very tired, but we feel so grateful to have had this opportunity to operate at Bugando.

Michaela and Julius went to Fonelisco orphanage today. Michaela enjoyed her time playing with the kids and taught them Bible stories. One thing that Michaela was surprised by was the amount of kids that had disabilities at the orphanage. We found that having a child with a disability in Tanzania is something that puts a stigma on the parents. They will often abandon the disabled child or the father will leave and the mother will be left to care for the child on her own. She played games like tic tac toe with the kids and Jenga. Another thing that Michaela was surprised by was the ages of the kids who did not go to school at the orphanage. There were kids around 12 to 13 years old who did not go to school. This is a common thing in Tanzania as well.

Orphanage Video

We all had great days and are excited for what tomorrow brings! God has been so good to us on this trip. We have been feeling His providence and know that He is guiding us each day. It feels wild that we have been here in Tanzania for this long. Time has been flying by and we are doing our best to soak up these last few days here.