The update on Sami is pretty much that there is no update. I've spent the past two days visiting four hospitals and one clinic here in Thailand, and none of them seem to be able to help me get an MRI done for Sami. One of the main problems seems to be that the hospital I went to in Beijing did not write up an order for an MRI, and the doctors aren't very willing to take my word for it that he needs one done. Another problem is that a 9 month old needs to be sedated for an MRI, and none of the hospitals seem to have the equipment to monitor him while he's under.
I do have an appointment scheduled for an EEG tomorrow afternoon, but the verdict is still out on when and if I'll be able to get the MRI. On Friday, we're supposed to see an neurologist who should be able to refer us, but my fear is that we won't be able to get everything done before we're set to leave the following Wednesday. Changing our tickets isn't really an option either because Ethiopians are only granted 15 day visas. The plan is constantly changing, so I'm sure by the time this blog even posts, we'll be moving in a different direction. We're trusting that Father will provide us what we need for Sami to get checked out, even if it means leaving the country and re-entering in order to purchase a new visa for them.
Tromping around Thailand for the past two days has been exhausting but has certainly given me my fair share of memorable moments. Here are a few notable ones:
- When leaving the first clinic I visited, one of the doctor's patients gave us a ride in his motorcycle taxi to the next hospital. The crazy thing about it was that he had just had several stitches removed from a large gash in his head. If that were me, I would have been either passed out or too dizzy to drive, but thankfully he seemed fine.
- At the second hospital, I was asked if I spoke Thai. When I answered no, they laughed at me. Then a nurse made sure that I moved out of the way from the fan for Sami's health. As we waited to see a doctor, I became increasingly aware that this hospital wasn't going to be able to help us. While I was pondering this, Sami blew out his diaper. I took this as a definite sign I should leave. I had to retrieve Sami's CT scan from the registration desk, so I couldn't sneak out of the waiting room. I had to come up with an excuse as to why I had to leave. I couldn't exactly say it was because I was out of diapers because then I would look like a bad mom. And I couldn't say it was because I didn't like their hospital because then I would offend them. They interpreted my lack of excuse to mean that I was unwilling to wait in line to see the doctor, so they skipped Sami's file ahead of about give people in front of us, which made me feel like a jerky foreigner. Finally, a doctor wearing a Mickey Sport shirt saw us and confirmed that they were in fact not able to help me. I paid $3 for my visit and happily left.
- I shared a truck taxi with three Buddhist monks in orange robes.
- I stiffed another truck taxi driver out of two thirds of his fare because I thought he was trying to take advantage of my inability to speak Thai. I got out of the truck, threw some money at him, and walked away as he shouted at me. I thought I was being to clever to avoid being cheated but later found out that his fare was actually reasonable. Oops!
- Sami & I both fell asleep in the fourth hospital's waiting room as a nurse tried to schedule our appointment for the EEG. When I woke up, I was served a glass of some yellow, fizzy drink that tasted like Froot Loops. But then again, it might have been pee...
So there's been some laughing, some crying, some wishing I was in America where this would more than likely be a little bit easier to accomplish. But there's also been a lot of prayer, a lot of one-on-one time with my little guy, and a lot of exploring a city that is so beautifully verdant. Overall, God is certainly sustaining us all and we're hopefully for forward progress at tomorrow's appointment.