Monday, April 30, 2012

A Lesson in Civil Authority

Sara Elizabeth over at A Mama’s Story, is doing a series on home birth and midwifery.  I was very honored when she asked me to answer some of her reader's questions.  This was especially time appropriate as in June we will be moving to Oaxaca to begin our own ministry and midwifery will be become a bigger part of that ministry.  Just last week Casa Compassiva, the birth center I will be helping with, had one of the mothers they are serving trust Jesus Christ as her personal Savior.  While Church planting is our main focus, we are excited to see what ministry opportunities midwifery will open up in Oaxaca.  And being totally honest, I am looking forward to attending births, prenatal and postpartum visits on a regular basis again.  
We are currently in the U.S. for the next 2-3 weeks to renew our visas, car registrations, and for me to be able to complete some of the requirements for recertification of my midwifery.  This past Thursday and Friday I was able to attend the ALSO (Advanced Life Support in Obstetrics) course in Corpus Christi, TX.  I really enjoyed the course, the case studies, the hands on practice and all the evidenced based information, but best of all I passed and learned new things, while concreting other skills!  :)  
The trip up to the border went very smooth.  We had everything packed, including food for the trip, the night before and we made it to the border in record time, without getting pulled over even once.  Once we reached the immigration office on the Mexican side we realized we had left 3 of the 7 passports and our Mexican visas in Encarnacion, 10 hours drive away.  We could not cancel the visas, and we weren’t sure if we would be able to cross to the U.S. side without our passports, plus we had almost no identification for Haden.  Sam thought he might have a scanned copy of his birth certificate in his computer.  We had copies of the passports and visas we were missing, but not his.  And my class started in Corpus Christi, a 4 hour drive away, early Thursday morning.
After some deliberation and calling back to Encarnacion to locate the passports.  We decided to try to go in and cancel the Mexican passports with the copies we had and then try to cross the border.  A national pastor was willing to ride the bus all night to bring us our passports by the next morning.  We could not cancel at the bridge with the copies because it was not the same bridge we had entered, but we did learn they could be cancelled without everyone present at the other bridge, so we decided to try to cross and Sam would come back the next morning and retrieve our passports and cancel the visas.  
As we approached the entrance to the bridge we were pulled over by Mexican police for  “speeding”.  We were already a little up tight about trying to cross without our passports and not looking forward to the wait on the hot bridge without air conditioning.  After quite a bit a talking, we moved toward the bridge.  As Sam was placing what paperwork and documents we had in order, he could not find his drivers license.  He jumped out and ran back across to the Mexican police to retrieve it.  They said they had given in back.  Meanwhile, I was trying not to get to a gate without Sam, much to the irritation of the people behind us.  When Sam returned very sweaty and out of breath, it was without his drivers license.  At this point, I had reached my stress limit and felt a constricting panic in my chest at the idea of trying to explain to the U.S. border authorities why we did not have three passports, and now Sam did not have a drivers license.  I rummaged around the car, remembering Sam had given the Mexican policeman a tract and there was his license neatly tucked in with all the tracts.  
Hannah mentioned she had no trust for anyone in civil authority and I assured her the U.S. side would be different.  Much to her surprise the U.S. authorities were professional and followed their protocol for this situation.  And we all breathed a sign of relief as we entered the U.S.  After watching the movie “UP”, we often start out trips and other adventures by crying out, “Adventure is out there!”  Sam began the chant and everyone followed along, but promptly stated that they were ok without anymore adventure for awhile.  There is actually even more to this story, but I'll stop here.  Praise the Lord for his ever present hand of protecton!
Because we were not busying enough, while we were packing and I was doing last minute studying for the ALSO course, the girls and I sewed some cute dresses.  You can see them at the top of the post.  Have a great week everyone!  

And of course I'm linking up with A Mama's Story!

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