Barf Well, A Blessing

Monday we left Karamoja. Monday, I was 39 weeks along. Monday, we had one of the first muddy, go-off-roading-around-stuck-trucks drive of the year thus far. Despite the excitement, I did not go into labor and we are now installed in a small home in Kampala. Until now, the waiting for baby has been a background to my life helped along with a little bit of prayer and preparation mayhem. Total aside: I will confess that sometimes a hyper sense of adventure can make us desire really stupid things. A small portion of me wanted to give birth in Karamoja. I mean really, who could beat that kind of street cred?! But then again there are no guarantees in childbirth and I’d prefer we both survive the experience to enjoy life together. Besides, I was scaring even our Karimojong friends by staying so long, so I think I’ve earned at least a little credit.

Back to waiting, it has now become the prime objective and we all know how easy that is to handle. Day one in an apartment by ourselves in Kampala and we’re twiddling our thumbs wondering where I can go climb stairs to get things moving! Despite being out of our ordinary lives, we still have to sort out naps and meals and washing clothing and all the aspects of everyday life that don’t simply go away when you change locations. I’m worried about how Carmel will handle a new baby sister, not to mention the time without us while we’re in the hospital. I’m worried I’ve forgotten something entirely vital. Now I have the time to dwell on such thoughts. May I also be still and know that He is God!

The occasion of our departure also taught me a new Karimojong idiom. “Tolek ejok” I was told. I responded with a confused look, since literally this means “Barf well!”. It was explained to me that although the person had no idea why they say it this way, that is how they bless each other when birth is imminent. Maybe the correlation is a violent ejection from the body or the sense of relief after? Who knows, but it has already provided me with much entertainment. Just another window into the Karimojong mind!

So here is to days of waiting, barfing well and being still in the Lord’s hands!

Posted by: Chloe on April 20, 2016 @ 4:10 pm
Filed under: life in karamoja


  1. Looking forward to hearing the good news. There seems to be such a fine line between fore-sight and responsibility…..and worry. It WILL be beautiful, because God is good. Carmel will be wonderful 🙂 You will barf well 🙂 Praying for you!

    Comment by Grace Marie VanNortwick — April 20, 2016 @ 5:02 pm

  2. Praising God that He has brought you this far safely!
    Enjoy the wait and trust God for Carmel’s heart and mind to be at rest.

    We will be at prayer for each of you.

    With Love,

    Comment by The Mum — April 21, 2016 @ 8:25 am

  3. Ha ha! That gives new meaning to “whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God”. I’ll be printing the bulletin tomorrow and sure hope I can put in some baby news!

    Comment by Allison — April 21, 2016 @ 8:29 pm

  4. A new phrase for a new time in life! The Karimojong are so descriptive! I’m praying you find a sitter for Carmel (unless I beat the baby!) and new routines in Kampala to pass the time productively there!
    Katie and Alan send their love! They were at Ransom’s 4th birthday party; he plays well with their daughter at Rancho San Diego library story time.
    i had great conversation with Alan and Pax. Alan is soooo good with babies!
    Trudy and i are going down your baby registry with friends so expect good things!
    Tolek ejok! Love, Mom

    Comment by Debra Hamann — April 24, 2016 @ 3:32 am

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