September 5 Update on Minga

Minga rested comfortably at her daughter Ita’s house on Tuesday, after her two hour drive into the city and in preparation for her 10pm dialysis appointment. Having to be in the ambulatory dialysis unit so late is going to be very disruptive to her sleep patterns. When at home, Minga goes to bed rather early, by 9pm. She is then up at 5am — longstanding practice from when she had children to get off to school and Roberto off to  the fields. They went to bed early so they didn’t have to use much kerosene to light lamps in the house. Kerosene was expensive. And they were up early because Roberto started his work before sunup, when it began to get really hot.

I don’t imagine she’ll get back to Ita’s much before 3 or 3:30am. Sleeping late is a possibility, but it’s hot — that’s why few people stay in bed. And, there will be people up and moving around at Ita’s, including young children. Keeping the house quiet so that Minga can sleep will be a challenge.

Lily says that some family members are going to undertake training for home-based peritoneal dialysis, just in case Dr. Felipe can’t get Minga into the Penonome unit. I’m not sure yet who is going to do this, and neither is she. Humberto, who lives in Minga’s house, has said he can’t — too complicated, too stressful, too hard.

Here’s another pic of Minga from back in the day. Washing had to be done daily, 7 days a week. Minga could either take the clothes — and everyone — to the river, or carry cans and cans of water to fill her water drum to do the washing at home. On a Sunday, when Roberto didn’t work, they made a morning of it. Teri and Rufina are in the front. Minga is in the next row, with Ana by her side. Daira and Angel are on the first horse, and Roberto holding Ita on the second. Can you see how skinny the horse is? No humans got enough to eat, and so the animals got even less. The dog, by Teri, looks skinny too.

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