Monday, May 17, 2010

I hate needles!

Welcome to rainy season in Ukraine! I have been pretty good at controlling the weather. Whenever I bring my umbrella, it doesn't rain. Whenever I don't bring my umbrella, it does.
As was the case when Sister Murphy and I went in to have our blood tested for "Sneed" (HIV), for out trip to Bulgaria to re-new our Ukrainian visa. It was one of the most frightening experiences. We were already drenched like dogs when we walked into the small facility. There were three very skinny men sitting on a bench inside making loud comments about us, then we were taken into an office and tried to explain what we wanted. Then they figured it out, or so we hoped and took us into the medical room where there was lots of plastic and pointy objects. Sister Murphy went first and after the needle was in, the nurse accidentally knocked it and it went sideways. I'm rocking back and forth just thinking about it. Then it was my turn. If it wasn't for the sake of missionary work I would have ran out of there as fast as I could! But I sat down and stuck out my arm, squeezed my eyes shut and it was over before I knew it. Sister Murphy and I left running and said that if we did not have aids before, we did now. We had to wait three days before returning and were dreading it the whole time. When we went back it was a bright beautiful sunny day because I was carrying an umbrella. We slowly opened the door to the facility and saw a six year old girl skipping happily about and a cleaning lady who was very friendly. We had to wait about five minutes before the nurse was ready to meet with us. We talked to the little girl, and her mother when she came out, and gave them a family proclamation. Then we were invited into the office, and when the nurse was filling out our certificates another nurse and the head doctor came in and they were all smiling and asking us questions about why we are here- super friendly. I think maybe they were so impressed that two young American girls both were HIV free, they wanted to how we do it and more about our message! We gave them all family proclamations that explain why! So after all, it turned out to be a good experience. I even want to go back there to check up on our new friends!

-Sister Howell

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